Ethereum (ETH) is expected to approach its new all-time high of over $1400. With this Ethereum’s 2021 returns so far stand at nearly 80%.

The world’s second-largest cryptocurrency Ethereum (ETH) has skyrocketed once again surging 10% and moving past $1300 levels. At the time of writing, ETH was trading at $1327 with a market cap of $150 billion.With this move, Ethereum (ETH) is now just 5% short of its all-time high of $1400. It has been a phenomenal start to 2021 for ETH investors. With today’s move, ETH’s year-to-date returns for 2021 currently stand at nearly 80%.The ETH price surge comes on the backdrop of a strong rally in the overall cryptocurrency market. The overall cryptocurrency market cap surge over $1 trillion for the time earlier this week and is currently around ~$1.1 trillion. Well, the crypto market is abuzz of an ETH whale taking a long position of nearly $1 billion on crypto exchange Bitfinex.Taking a long position means paying off all loans initially to increase exposure to ETH while keep holding the asset. Interestingly, the long position has now been closed just 1 month before the CME ETH Futures launch in February next month.

~1.4MM ETH ($1.7B) long claimed on BitFinex. Was being built since Feb-March. Majority of the size was put on sub $200, over $1B in pnl.

Interesting time to close 1 month before CME futures and launch and below ATH but at $1200 level of interest.

— light (@lightcrypto) January 9, 2021

The institutional interest for Ethereum has surged in recent times. With the CME Ether Futures coming next month, institutions have already started showing active participation in ETH. The ETH accumulation is also taking rise as the total number of ETH addresses holding over 10K+ ETH has reached close to 1,100.

? #Ethereum $ETH Number of Addresses Holding 10k+ coins just reached a 1-year high of 1,097

Previous 1-year high of 1,094 was observed on 07 January 2021

View metric:

— glassnode alerts (@glassnodealerts) January 9, 2021

Surge in Ethereum (ETH) Transaction FeeThe Ethereum network activity has also seen a considerable surge in recent times. As per data on Etherscan, the ETH hash rate has reached an all-time high of 314,493.4455 GH/s as of the last recording on Friday, January 8. As per data on YCharts, the Ethereum average transaction fee surged to an all-time high of $17.43 per transaction on January 4.Previously, this transaction fee jumped to $12.5 on September 1, 2020. At that time, many said that the transaction fee surge was due to the rising DeFi activity. With high network activity, ETH miners have been more profitable than BTC miners over the last year. Explaining the reason behind this high network fee, Kamil Brejcha, Founder at Dexfin said:

“We face high ETH fees because the Ethereum network still relies on miners to be block producers. The current update is called the Beacon chain, which allows depositing Ethereum for staking nodes. These nodes run on their own blockchain, which is not yet part of the mainnet.”

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