The amount of ETH on exchanges recently hit a 19-month low, according to data aggregator Glassnode.
Data from the platform shows ETH balances on major exchanges was at 14.6 million ETH or about $29.5 billion. The data includes information on exchanges like Binance, Bitfinex, Gemini, and Kraken.
— glassnode alerts (@glassnodealerts) April 4, 2021
This is a significant drop from the 19 million it was at in late 2020. The last time ETH balances were this low was back in September 2019. Since then, the market has become a rollercoaster ride, experiencing many highs and lows, but always steadily progressing towards greater adoption.
The fact that the asset is now residing elsewhere may indicate that investors are expecting to gain more from holding it. It could be the case that investors are moving their Ethereum to cold wallets for safekeeping for the long run.
Institutional investors are also displaying much more interest in the asset, which bodes well for it on a longer timescale. Besides Grayscale doubling down on Ethereum and ERC-20 based assets, blockchain node operator Staked also launched an Ethereum trust.
The great interest in both the price and utility of the Ethereum network has been sparked by the arrival of use cases like decentralized finance (DeFi) and non-fungible tokens (NFTs).
Both of these have gone on to achieve an appreciable amount of adoption.
DeFi, NFTs, and ETH 2.0
Ethereum hit a new all-time high a few days ago on April 2, reaching a price of $2,145. Predictions for the asset are optimistic, especially with the launch of ETH 2.0 and the expected new features.
Ethereum’s Berlin upgrade is expected to be ready by April 14, which should help to alleviate high gas costs. Several other EIPs are also accompanying the release.
The sudden, explosive growth of NFTs and the continued growth of DeFi have contributed to the rise in price. The two niches have done a lot to make an appeal to the mainstream public — NFTs particularly so.
High-profile names such as Elon Musk, Grimes, and Snoop Dogg have all hopped on the bandwagon. The interest in the space appears to be at a peak, with CryptoKitties and NBA Top Shot Developer Dapper Labs recently receiving over $300 million in funding.