Crypto trading volume has risen by 73% in the past two days, surpassing $35 billion. In fact, the only times we’ve seen trading volumes this high were more than a year ago, during the bull run, and on April 25, 2018.
Bitcoin (BTC) has gained almost $400 during the 48h rally, touching $4,010. Now, the question is whether the $4,000 resistance will hold.
However, it’s the amazing performance of the altcoins that seems to have pushed the market up. ETH, EOS, BCH, and ADA led the pack. Here’s why.
Did ETH start the rally due to the Ice Age?
Ethereum (ETH) was the first crypto to start growing substantially in price. Its trading volume doubled and its price has risen more than 20 percent in the past 48 hours. ETH is currently trading at $148 per coin.
This is probably because of a large reduction in the new supply of Ether, caused by the “Ice Age”, coupled with increased demand. In fact, the lowest ever number of daily block rewards – accounting for 12,989 new ETH – was recorded on February 17, 2019. That’s exactly when the price rally started. For perspective, the daily new supply of ETH from mining in Q4 2018 was around 20,000 ETH.
While the new supply was reduced by 35 percent, the price of ETH rose by more than 40 percent in the past 10 days. The Ice Age might reduce new supply by a further 23 percent from here, which might cause a further price rise. It remains to be seen whether this will help ETH push through the historically strong resistance of $150 in the next few days.
However, these issuance rates won’t last long, since the Constantinople fork is expected to delay the Ice Age difficulty bomb by 12 months. Constantinople will keep the new supply at around 13,500 ETH per day, which is a little bit higher than today. The fork is supposed to take place around February 27, 2019.
The fork will not require any action from the owners of ETH or smart contract developers. However, miners, node operators, and exchanges will have to update their clients.
ADA bullish on Shelley
Cardano (ADA) has gone up by around 15 percent in the last 48 hours and is now worth $0.047. This positive momentum might be thanks to the Shelley phase of the project being 90 percent finished, according to Charles Hoskinson. It is expected to start in Q1 of 2019.
Shelley is supposed to decentralize the network and introduce staking and delegation. Its new features are expected to attract developers. These features include multi-signature transactions, quantum-resistant transactions, light client support, and “human-friendly addresses.”
However, Cardano’s other milestones are currently vague. Hoskinson will announce a new roadmap for 2020 during his keynote speech at the IOHK Summit on April 17-18. At the moment, the timer on Cardano’s roadmap page isn’t available.
Aside from Shelley’s performance, it will be worth keeping an eye on the IOHK Summit’s roadmap announcement in April. The price movement around the announcement date will depend on the new milestones set. The community expects positive news, but traders will nevertheless be prepared to short ADA if the roadmap happens to include delays of important updates.
Is BCH riding on Bitmain news?
The price of Bitcoin Cash (BCH) grew over 21 percent over the past two days and currently stands at $146. BCH’s market performance might have been reinforced by Bitmain’s announcement of a new energy-efficient ASIC chip for mining Bitcoin and Bitcoin Cash. Apparently, it will be 30 percent cheaper to mine BTC and BCH with the new chips.
EOS has dethroned LTC
Amazingly, EOS has rallied almost 35 percent in the past 48 hours, reaching $3.78 at one point. It has since corrected a bit and is currently trading at $3.62. At the same time, its trading volume rose by a whopping 185 percent, reaching $2.3 billion in just two days. The popular platform for dApps has dethroned another great performer, Litecoin (LTC), from fourth place in terms of market cap, after the latter maintained the position for several days.
EOS is still ahead of Ethereum and Tron in terms of the number of dApp users, as well as the number of transactions and volume transacted on dApps, according to dApp Radar.
Bull trap or bull run?
While cryptocurrencies, such as Bitcoin, traded flat for days prior to the rally, many fundamental changes have been happening behind the scenes. Apart from the aforementioned coins, positive momentum is building up around other altcoins including Stellar (XLM). Notably, IBM’s Jesse Lund hinted yesterday that IBM will expand its Stellar-based cross-border payment system to include 40 banks. This means strong competition for RippleNet is emerging.
Even though the mood is predominantly bullish, traders are careful not to get stuck in the bull trap. Some, like TradingRoom, are anticipating a pause and a pullback, but also expect the bullish momentum to continue due to positive TA indicators.
$EOS covered 30% gains in a day out of the 45% predicted. We are not done with the upside momentum yet
There is a pause & pullback but I do expect the momentum to continue until we get to the target
— Trading Room (@tradingroomapp) February 19, 2019