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Ethereum bulls likely to profit $130 million on ETH options despite two-week slump

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Ether (ETH) investors have no reason to complain after the 344% gains accumulated in 2021 until Nov. 24. Still, analysts fear that the $4,000 resistance test on Nov. 19 is forming a descending channel that aims at $3,600 by mid-December, an 18% correction from the current $4,400 price.

Despite outperforming Bitcoin (BTC) by 16% in the past month alone and the ETH/BTC pair climbing to 10-week highs, Ether seems to be struggling with its own success.

Ether/USD price on Bitstamp. Source: TradingView

Users continue to complain about Ethereum gas fees, averaging over $45 over the past three weeks. However problematic that can be, it leaves no doubt that the largest decentralized finance (DeFi) and nonfungible tokens (NFT) markets continue to thrive on Ethereum.

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Increasing regulatory uncertainties in the United States remain a decisive limiting factor for Ether’s rally. On Nov. 24, the Securities and Exchange Commission, or SEC, clarified that the crypto panel in the public meeting scheduled for Dec. 2 would focus on the regulatory framework.

Not even the one million ETH burned since the implementation of EIP-1559 in August was enough to keep Ether’s price at all-time highs. As the network emits about 5.4 million ETH per year, Ether remains an inflationary asset. Still, Ether’s price increased by 16% vs. Bitcoin since Oct. 25, partially reflecting that impact.

Bullish calls dominate Friday’s ETH options expiry

Despite the 10% correction to $4,400 since the $4,850 all-time high on Nov. 10, the Ether call (buy) options vastly dominate Friday’s expiry.

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Ether options aggregate open interest for Nov. 26. Source: Coinglass

The green area representing the $820 million call (buy) options is the lion’s share of Nov. 26 expiry. Compared to the $440 million puts (sell) instruments, there’s an 87% difference.

Nevertheless, the 1.87 call-to-put ratio should not be taken literally, as the recent ETH drop will likely wipe out 77% of the bullish bets. For instance, if Ether’s price remains below $4,400 at 8:00 am UTC on Nov. 26, only $165 million worth of those call (buy) options will be available at the expiry.

In other words, what good is holding the right to buy Ether at $4,400 or $4,600 if it’s trading below that price?

Bears need sub-$4,200 ETH to balance the scales

Below are the three most likely scenarios based on the current price action. The number of option contracts available on Nov. 26 for bulls (call) and bear (put) instruments vary depending on the expiry ETH price. The imbalance favoring each side constitutes the theoretical profit:

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  • Below $4,100: 15,400 calls vs. 15,200 puts. The result is balanced.
  • Between $4,200 and $4,500: 38,400 calls vs. 8,800 puts. The net result is $130 million favoring the call (buy) instruments.
  • Above $4,500: 50,200 calls vs. 2,300 puts. The net result favors the call (bull) instruments by $215 million.

This crude estimate considers call options being used in bullish bets and put options exclusively in neutral-to-bearish trades. Still, this oversimplification disregards more complex investment strategies.

For example, a trader could have sold a put option, effectively gaining a positive exposure to Ether above a specific price. But unfortunately, there’s no easy way to estimate this effect.

Both sides have incentives to move price

Bears need a 7.5% move from $4,400 down to sub-$4,100 to balance the scales and avoid a $130 million loss. On the other hand, bulls need a 2.3% price increase to $4,500 to boost their profits by $85 million.

Traders must consider that the amount of effort a seller needs to pressure the price is immense and usually ineffective during bullish markets. Currently, options market incentives are balanced, favoring the $4,200 to $4,500 price range, entitling bulls to a $130 million profit on Friday, Nov. 26.

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Ethereum

Ethereum Challenger Terra Becomes Third-Largest Blockchain by Total Value Locked, Surpassing Solana and Avalanche

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Decentralized finance (DeFi) platform Terra (LUNA) has surpassed its rival blockchains to become the third-largest crypto by total value locked (TVL).

Crypto market intelligence firm Delphi Digital says that the Ethereum competitor has now overtaken Solana (SOL) and Avalanche (AVAX) in terms of TVL primarily due to value growth in Bonded Luna (bLuna), which is the token used by liquid staking protocol Lido as collateral to borrow stablecoin TerraUSD (UST) within the Anchor protocol.

“TVL on Terra network overtook Avalanche and Solana, making it [the] third-largest blockchain by TVL after Ethereum (ETH) and Binance Smart Chain (BSC).

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It’s important to note that TVL numbers are highly reflective alongside native token prices as they are commonly used as collateral in DeFi and as base pairs for DEXes. In Terra’s case, DEX base pairs usually utilize Tether instead of LUNA, therefore this growth in TVL is primarily contributed by value growth in Lido bLuna.”

The TVL of a DeFi platform is the total value held within its smart contracts. It is calculated by multiplying the amount of funds locked into the network as collateral by the current price of the assets.

Delphi Digital points to how LUNA’s rise has helped Terra’s stablecoin UST increase its overall supply by 4 billion tokens due to a proposal to mint UST on the Terra network.

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“The increase in UST Supply from under $3 billion to $7 billion across mid-November was due to this proposal to mint UST with LUNA in the community pool to grow the Terra ecosystem through UST usage.

UST did another ~$1 billion of growth in circulating supply after 19th November.”

LUNA is exchanging hands at $70.85 as of writing, an 46% increase from its 30-day low of $38.06.

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Fourth-Largest Ethereum Whale Pounces on Large-Cap Altcoin, Accumulating $580,000,000 in Crypto

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One mega-whale just loaded up on an Ethereum (ETH) token that powers a popular crypto marketplace.

The blockchain-transaction tracker WhaleStats reveals that the unnamed wallet received 14,000,000 FTT, the native token of the FTX exchange. The transaction was worth $581,444,018 at time of sending.

The whale now holds over $1.2 billion worth of FTT with a total value exceeding $3.8 billion and is now ranked fourth on the WhaleStats’ list of the top 1000 Ethereum wallets, excluding the ETH cryptocurrency itself.

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Source: WhaleStats

Popular crypto analyst Smart Contracter is also showing interest in FTT, noting that the Fibonacci ABC spacing between sharp highs and lows on the coin’s historical chart offers encouraging signs for future price action.

The trader says in a tweet to his 196,000 followers,

“Been a long while since I played FTT but I actually think a major bottom is in and we go to [all-time highs] from here.

Perfect ABC on super-high timeframes where ABC came below the 0.618 and bull/bear periods are almost 1:1 extension.”

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Source: Smart Contracter/Twitter

In late October news broke that FTX had purchased advertising airtime during the February 2022 Super Bowl as part of a wider push to bring crypto awareness to the mainstream.

Last week FTX also announced the launch of a marketplace for Ethereum-based non-fungible tokens (NFTs).

At time of writing, the FTT token is mostly flat on the day and trading at $42.73.

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Top Trader Says Ethereum Looks Exceptionally Bullish, Unveils Targets for Bitcoin and Explosive Altcoin Terra

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A popular crypto analyst believes Ethereum (ETH), Bitcoin (BTC) and one altcoin are about to blast off and leave the recent market-wide slump in the dust.

The pseudonymous crypto strategist and trader Kaleo tells his 454,000 Twitter followers that ETH’s time to shine has arrived as the “king” of the layer-1 blockchain protocols.

The analyst says,

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“ETH is so bullish after the most recent flush it’s not even funny.

We’ve seen a major rotation play among the alt [Layer-1s] the past few months.

It only makes sense that the king of the L1s finally has a chance to suck liquidity from the rest of the market and have a run of its own.”

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Ethereum is about even on the day, trading for $4,346 at time of writing.

Kaleo next looks at Bitcoin and says he still believes the top crypto will reach at least $100,000 during the current cycle.

“I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again – I still expect to see Bitcoin have a parabolic move to top out at $100K+ this cycle.

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I’ll gladly start scaling out around $150K. I expect it to go higher, but I’m not concerned with nailing the top. Until then, just keep stacking.”

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Source: Kaleo/Twitter

BTC currently sits at $50,900 after having battled back from a flash-crash low around the $43,500 level on December 3rd.

Lastly, the crypto analyst lays out his price prediction for the Terra (LUNA) protocol, whose native token LUNA underpins a suite of decentralized stablecoins.

Kaleo tells his followers that Terra reaching the $100 threshold is inevitable.

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“LUNA going to $100 from here is only a matter of time.”

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Source: Kaleo/Twitter

LUNA has seen some wild price action in recent days, with the altcoin tumbling from $69.66 to $53.64 late last week before surging to $77.37 on Sunday.

The 10th-ranked crypto has since corrected but is back up 5% on the day to $70.74.

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