Ethereum, the cryptocurrency minted on the Ethereum blockchain, is the second biggest cryptocurrency in terms of market capitalization, behind Bitcoin. Though Bitcoin is the original crypto, Ether is actually the most widely used coin. On Thursday night, it reached an all-time high, touching $4,400.
The cryptocurrency’s previous all-time high was $4,379, which it reached in May. Like Bitcoin, Ether had seen its price rise sharply since late 2020, entering 2021 at $383. Also like Bitcoin, its price crashed in May after, including mining.
Ether’s price plummeted to below $1,800 in July, only to rise to $4,400 on Thursday. At the time of writing, the price stood at $4,305. Causes of cryptocurrency price movements can be hard to pin down, but Ether’s new high seems to be off the twin accelerators of the Shiba Inu coin’s massive volume and the implementation of an upgrade to the Ethereum blockchain that will make minting new coins significantly more energy efficient.
While Bitcoin has much wider recognition, its primary use is as a speculative asset. Developers instead choose the Ethereum network to buildand altcoins, which means ether has become the default currency in crypto markets.
Shiba Inu, a riff on the famous DogeCoin “memecoin,” is one of the many altcoins built on the Ethereum network. It became the latest crypto sensation this week. It has grown by more than 70,000,000% in the past year and 960% just this past month, according to Coinbase. The coin reached a record high of $0.000086 Wednesday, up from $0.0000000001 last October.