Up 100% since the beginning of the year, the Ethereum price is set to resume its northerly progress.
The smart contract platform continues to cement its position as the go-to platform for decentralised finance (DeFi), and that looks to be helping it widen its influence across the crypto space.
News that Ripple is planning to develop interoperability technology for XRP and Ethereum is the latest evidence of this. Ripple’s development arm Xpring will be leading the efforts, as well as looking to work on other crypto asset interoperability candidates.
But it is not just in DeFi that dapps running on Ethereum’s platform are making headway.
Two projects go live on the Ethereum blockchain
Gaming development project Enjin has flicked the switch on its platform that will allow devs to integrate assets into their games.
The ERC-1155 token that Enjin created allows devs to build smart contracts that make use of non-fungible tokens (NFT) and fungible one in their games. NFT is critical for in-game assets such as skins and weapons, where trading of unique assets is a growing part of gaming.
Virtual world Decentraland (MANA) is also now live on the Ethereum blockchain after two years of development. The project has built up a community of 100,000 members in that time and like Enjin (ENJ) also makes use of NFTs for game items. Players can buy LAND with the MANA token upon which they build their worlds.
The increased activity on the network is also reflected in the steadily rising hash rate since the beginning of this year.
ETH watchers are also encouraged by positive briefings on Ethereum 2.0 progress. Andrew Keys, co-founder of ConsenSys, said that the upgrade to proof-of-stake could happen this year. Reportedly there has been 100% take-up on the testnet, launched at the start of the year.
Meanwhile, Ethereum co-founder Vitalik Buterin has provided more detail on the phased release and the scalability, sharding and privacy features that will be at the heart of Ethereum 2.0.
ETHUSD Technical analysis
Although ETHUSD has suffered from the downdraft triggered by bitcoin’s latest reversal from above $10,000, it has come back to life today.
ETH continues to rise in strength against bitcoin, up 58% since 14 January (see chart below). It is currently maintaining a print above crucial support at 0.026.
ETH was trading 3% higher (when the chart snapshot below was taken) over the past 24 hours according to coinmarketcap, as bulls look to recover lost ground.
Strong support at $250 – the 0.382 Fibonacci retracement level (i.e. 38% retracement from high)– was tested on 17 February leading to a recovery to 286 before 19 February bitcoin-induced fall back to form a slightly higher low near the 250 support to currently nudge resistance at $265.
A breakthrough the 0.236 Fib ($266) should see momentum pick up, with the MACD set to cross its signal line, confirmed by a rising relative strength index (51) on the 4-hour chart (see below).
Conversely a drop from here turns support into resistance at $265, as also seen in the volume profile (VP) in the chart below. VP shows buyers and sellers evenly split at these prices, with the point of control defining the area of highest trading interest at $267, the current resistance region.
ETHUSD price target
A price target of $289 to be achieved by the beginning of next week, taking ETHUSD back to the year-to-date high, is reasonable.
However, that target is conditional on holding above the 0.236 Fib ($265), a level that has just been breached to the downside.
At the time of writing ETH has slipped to $260 on Coinbase, but is still up 2.2% in the past 24 hours.
Nevertheless, the ETH price is currently hovering above the Ichimoku cloud (shaded green in Fib chart) which is also a useful indicator of bullish buoyancy in support of the $289 target.