Ether Jumps to Nine-Month High Ahead of 'Shapella'; Liquid Staking Tokens Jump

LSD sector tokens rose as much as 22% in the past 24 hours, data shows.

AccessTimeIconApr 5, 2023 at 7:03 a.m. UTC
Updated Apr 6, 2023 at 3:43 p.m. UTC
10 Years of Decentralizing the Future
May 29-31, 2024 - Austin, TexasThe biggest and most established global hub for everything crypto, blockchain and Web3.Register Now

An upcoming upgrade on the Ethereum network is funneling capital to ether (ETH) and staking-focused tokens as traders likely expect higher prices for these assets in the future.

Ether jumped 5% in the past 24 hours, a top performer among major tokens, to over $1,920 on Wednesday morning. That’s the highest price level for the token since August 2022, CoinDesk data shows.

Ether has set a nine-month price high. (CoinDesk)
Ether has set a nine-month price high. (CoinDesk)

Open interest, or the number of unsettled derivative contracts, for ether futures rose to $5.6 billion in the past 24 hours with over $23 billion worth of these products traded on crypto exchanges.

The interest in ether trading comes ahead of Shapella, a portmanteau of Shanghai and Capella, two major Ethereum network upgrades that are expected to occur simultaneously on April 12. Shapella will allow investors to withdraw their ether staked on the Ethereum blockchain. Staked ether cannot be withdrawn or freely traded currently.

Some say the event could prove bullish for ether in the future because staking and capturing yields directly from the blockchain becomes more accessible to users.

“Allowing withdrawals, boosted by the recent popularity of liquid staking platforms, will make ETH staking much more accessible to retail investors who were previously unwilling to stake ETH for an undetermined amount of time,” said Chen Zhuling, CEO at staking service RockX, in a note to CoinDesk.

So far, investors have relied on liquid staking platforms such as Lido and Rocketpool, which issue the LDO and RPL tokens, respectively, to capture yields from staking ether on Ethereum nodes while freeing up capital for other uses. Uses range from using these tokens as collateral for loans or margin trading to earning additional yield.

This has culminated in the liquid staking derivatives (LSD), a term for tokens issued by such platforms, emerging as one of the strongest investor plays in 2023.

Liquid staking tokens jumped overnight as investors bet on growth in decentralized staking products ahead of Shapella, data shows.

The liquid staking sector jumped 6% on average, CoinGecko data shows, while the broader crypto market capitalization rose a relatively lesser 3%.

LDO and RPL led gains in this sector with a 5% rise each, while tokens with a smaller market capitalization, such as Stader’s SD, surged 22%.

Disclosure

Please note that our privacy policy, terms of use, cookies, and do not sell my personal information has been updated.

CoinDesk is an award-winning media outlet that covers the cryptocurrency industry. Its journalists abide by a strict set of editorial policies. In November 2023, CoinDesk was acquired by the Bullish group, owner of Bullish, a regulated, digital assets exchange. The Bullish group is majority-owned by Block.one; both companies have interests in a variety of blockchain and digital asset businesses and significant holdings of digital assets, including bitcoin. CoinDesk operates as an independent subsidiary with an editorial committee to protect journalistic independence. CoinDesk offers all employees above a certain salary threshold, including journalists, stock options in the Bullish group as part of their compensation.

Shaurya Malwa

Shaurya is the Deputy Managing Editor for the Data & Tokens team, focusing on decentralized finance, markets, on-chain data, and governance across all major and minor blockchains.


Learn more about Consensus 2024, CoinDesk's longest-running and most influential event that brings together all sides of crypto, blockchain and Web3. Head to consensus.coindesk.com to register and buy your pass now.