Ethereum (ETH) price reclaims $2K as data shows a surge in network activity

    2023.11.24 | exchangesranking | 220onlookers

    Ether (ETH) price is trading slightly higher on Nov. 23, maintaining support above the $2,000 level after briefly retesting $1,930 on Nov. 21. Over the past week, Ether's price has increased by 2.5%, while the total market capitalization has grown by 0.5%. This uptrend can be attributed to improved decentralized applications (DApps) metrics, increased protocol fees, and Ethereum's dominance in the non-fungible token (NFT) market.

    To assess whether Ether can sustain its $2,000 price point, one must consider the repercussions of Binance's recent regulatory challenges following its plea deal with the U.S. Department of Justice (DoJ).

    Investor fear drops as Ethereum network conditions improve

    Binance leads in Ether spot trading volume, accounting for 30% of ETH futures contracts' open interest. The closure of Binance's $2.35 billion worth of ETH derivatives contracts within a short period could have significant consequences. Despite initial analyses showing minimal changes in spreads and liquidity, Binance witnessed net outflows of $1.53 billion between Nov. 21 and Nov. 23, as reported by DefiLlama.

    The regulatory landscape presents risks and opportunities. Some view Binance's actions as evidence of sufficient reserves, while others are concerned about the $4.3 billion fine facing Binance and its former CEO, Changpeng "CZ" Zhao. Notably, Bitcoin advocate Luke Broyles advised followers to withdraw their coins from exchanges.

    Even if Binance continues operations and safeguards all client assets, the long-term effects of full compliance and increased scrutiny remain uncertain. Additionally, the relationship between Binance and stablecoin issuers like Tether (USDT), TrueUSD (TUSD) and Binance USD (BUSD) raises further questions.

    Government agencies gaining access to previously undisclosed money laundering and terrorist financing operations through Binance, including fiat payment gateways and banking partners, increases the likelihood of regulatory actions against stablecoin providers. This news has been particularly detrimental to Ethereum, given Binance's status as the third-largest ETH staker, with $1.24 billion in deposits according to DefiLlama.

    However, recent regulatory developments also offer some positives. Binance's move towards full compliance reduces the risk associated with unregulated exchanges, making it more likely for the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) to approve spot exchange-traded fund (ETF) instruments for cryptocurrencies. Leading industry mutual fund managers, such as BlackRock and Fidelity, have recently expressed interest in launching Ether spot-based ETFs.

    Furthermore, the SEC's lawsuit against Kraken on Nov. 20, which lists 16 cryptocurrencies as securities, excludes Ether (ETH). This omission reduces the likelihood of regulatory actions against the Ethereum Foundation and entities involved in the 2015 ICO, providing a silver lining amidst regulatory uncertainties.

    Ethereum network health and NFT markets surge

    Assessing the Ethereum network's health, Ethereum DApps achieved a total value locked (TVL) of $26 billion on Nov. 23, representing a 5% increase from the previous week, according to DappRadar. However, a hack significantly impacted dYdX, resulting in a 16% decline in the protocol's deposits.

    Top blockchains by active addresses and DeFi TVL. Source: DappRadar

    While Ether's market capitalization of $248 billion trails behind Bitcoin's $728 billion, the two networks generate similar protocol revenues. Over the past seven days, the Bitcoin network collected $57.5 million in fees, compared to Ethereum's $54.3 million. These figures do not include ecosystem fees from platforms like Lido, Uniswap, or Maker protocols.

    Ethereum also reclaimed its leadership position in NFT sales, recording $12.6 million in transactions within 24 hours. Despite a brief period where Bitcoin led in NFT activity, Ethereum remains the preferred blockchain for prominent NFT projects.

    The positive performance from Ethereum on Nov. 23 can be attributed to improved on-chain metrics, growing expectations of spot ETF approval and reduced regulatory concerns stemming from the 2015 ICO.

    This article is for general information purposes and is not intended to be and should not be taken as legal or investment advice. The views, thoughts, and opinions expressed here are the author’s alone and do not necessarily reflect or represent the views and opinions of Cointelegraph.

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