Cheatsheet: Ethereum staking at record high, exchange balances at 6-year lows

Ethereum users have boosted their collective stake in the blockchain over the past month, even as prices spike.

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This is Cheatsheet, a primer on what’s happening in crypto today.

Bitcoin is doing well but it smells like altcoin season out there — with a hint of wet dog.

Dog coins dogecoin (DOGE), bonk (BONK) and shiba inu (SHIB) lead the top end of the market with gains between 32% and 25% over the past day. 

Bitcoin (BTC) and ether (ETH) had managed about 6.5% as of 7 am ET, still a sizable gain considering their scale.

Arweave (AR), the “permaweb” blockchain geared for decentralized file storage, continues to enjoy a moment, also climbing by a quarter. 

AR is the second-best performing top-100 crypto after PEPE over the past week. Arweave has tapped into AI hype, having just launched a testnet for an adjacent blockchain built to power decentralized computing.

What’s happening on-chain

Ethereum holders on the whole continue to stake their ETH as prices reach nearly two-year highs.

  • There’s more than 31 million ETH ($107.1 billion) staked as part of consensus, up 7% in one month.
  • More than a quarter of the circulating supply is staked — over double the ETH on crypto exchanges.
  • ETH staked is at an all-time high, while exchange balances are at near six-year lows.

There are now almost 1 million validators on the network. About half are either managed by liquid staking protocol Lido or Coinbase on behalf of their users.

Barring this Tuesday, there has been more ETH queued to be staked than unlocked every day this month. Another 13.4% of the supply (16.1 million ETH worth $54.4 billion) is kept in the network’s DeFi apps after dropping half a percent overnight. 

Newly-launched re-staking platform EigenLayer just surpassed Maker — the protocol behind major stablecoin DAI — now with 2.85 million ETH ($9.7 billion), a figure that tripled this month.

Read more: EigenLayer’s $100M haul ignites series of adjacent investments

EigenLayer could soon topple Aave
  • 88% of the SOL supply is still staked ($50.15 billion) but that number has slipped over the past two epochs (about four days).
  • Nearly 5% of SOL is locked in DeFi, up from 3.7% at the start of the month. Lending protocols Kamino and marginfi, alongside liquid staking app Jito, are gaining deposits.
  • Bitcoin’s budding DeFi sector could soon surpass Solana’s for total value locked, even if still getting off the ground.

Crypto business

Volatility came for crypto stocks yesterday, with only four rising across Wednesday’s session and into after hours trade.

  • MicroStrategy is on track to open 15% higher than yesterday (its bitcoin is now worth $12 billion).
  • Core Scientific, a bitcoin miner, may still stick the landing after bankruptcy, set for 9.5% higher.
  • CleanSpark, another miner, corrected by 13.5% before adding 6% after hours.

Despite its retracement, CleanSpark is still the best performing crypto stock this year, having added two-thirds to its share price (MicroStrategy and Marathon are second and third).

Nevada-headquartered CleanSpark is on an acquisition spree, buying up three Mississippi data centers with aims to boost its hashrate by more than 15 EH/s, the equivalent of around 2.8% to bitcoin’s total right now.

Hut 8 however has lost 34% year-to-date amid leadership changes and a “merger of equals” with US Bitcoin Corp. The dip especially hurts considering bitcoin has climbed more than 40% and threatens new all-time highs. 

Read more: New Hut 8 CEO prepared to make ‘hard decisions’ to nix inefficiencies

  • Only six of about two dozen crypto stocks have outperformed the S&P 500 this year. 
  • ProShares’ fund offering short exposure to bitcoin, BITI, is one of the worst performing ETFs on the market this year, down 32%.
  • MicroStrategy execs have sold $155 million in company shares this year, three-quarters coming from former CEO Michael Saylor.

On the ground

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iykyk
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Ether ETFs could impact Ethereum in very complicated ways
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Should’ve spun up a DAO

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