In recent news, the successful Shapella upgrade on Ethereum has caused a surge in ether and other alternative cryptocurrencies, igniting the “alt season” narrative on Crypto Twitter. Over the past 24 hours, ether has seen a 10% increase, trading at 11-month highs above $2,120 during Asian trading hours.
The Shapella upgrade, which was released on Thursday, has brought about a significant development for the Ethereum network. It allows users to stake and unstake tokens from the network at will, which has improved the network’s overall outlook. As a result, governance tokens of the liquid staking protocols have seen outsized gains, with Lido’s LDO and Rocket Pool’s RPL surging as much as 14%.
Both protocols lock billions of dollars to provide yields on ether staking to users, who can stake any amount of ether to earn rewards while retaining the liquidity of locked coins through derivative tokens, without putting up the required 32 ether to run a validator node. Lido’s staked ether tokens (STETH) have climbed into the top ten cryptocurrencies by market capitalization of $12 billion, which is the amount of ether locked on the protocol.
Valerie Tetu, head of strategy at Lido Finance, believes that the Shapella upgrade has led to improved confidence among users. “Staking withdrawals enabled by the Shapella upgrade represent a significant milestone in the development of the Ethereum blockchain,” Tetu said over email. “Withdrawals will allow stakers to participate in securing the network with more confidence while increasing the capital efficiency of the tokens they decide to allocate.”
“With regards to the staking ecosystem, the ability for users to withdraw their tokens will support healthy competition across platforms and providers, as well as a broader diversity of staking offerings and architectures to flourish,” she added.
Meanwhile, dogecoin (DOGE) has gained for the second-straight day. Much of the run came as trading service eToro announced that it would offer crypto trading directly from the Elon Musk-owned social media giant Twitter, which likely drove speculation of doge being eventually adopted for use as payments on the platform. Musk is a vocal dogecoin proponent and has expressed support for the Dogecoin network’s development several times in the past.
Cardano (ADA) has also seen a surge of nearly 9% on the back of fundamental growth in the Cardano network, such as wider support for decentralized application (dApp) development. Some market observers expect the rally to continue over the next few weeks.
“Many traders had been waiting for the end of the upgrade to start long position accumulation, therefore neutral news about the US inflation plus deferred demand pushed ETH price up today,” Ilya Volkov, co-founder of crypto services platform YouHodler, told CoinDesk in an email. “ETH stays in the same upward trend channel from the beginning of the year. If the macro situation does not get worse, unlikely the current trend will be changed near future despite the fact that selling pressure is going to increase following weeks due to unlocking liquidity,” Volkov added.
Overall, the recent developments in the cryptocurrency market have shown that there is still room for growth and innovation. The successful Shapella upgrade on Ethereum has brought about a significant milestone in the development of the network, while the surges in dogecoin and cardano show that there is still a demand for alternative cryptocurrencies. As the market continues to evolve, it will be interesting to see what other developments will arise and how they will impact the overall landscape of the cryptocurrency industry.