The world’s second-largest cryptocurrency Ethereum (ETH) has shot up another 5% in the last 24 hours hitting $2,000 levels for the first time since May 2022.
The Ether (ETH) price has been rallying hard since the beginning of July and has gained nearly 100% over the last 40 days. The recent price rally comes in anticipation of The Merge upgrade next month in September 2022.
This euphoria could last until the Merge event. Data from Glassnode shows that for the very first time in history, the ETH Options interest has surpassed that of the BTC interest. As Glassnode explains:
For the first time in history, $ETH Options Open Interest at $6.6B has surpassed $BTC Open Interest at $4.8B. This appears to be a result of traders betting big with call options the Merge scheduled for mid-September.
Ethereum Investors Should Maintain Caution Now
However, the data from the derivatives market suggests that traders are expecting a price drop after the event. As per Glassnode analysts, this could turn into a ‘sell-the-news’ kind of an event.
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The September call options are currently dwarfing the put options with Deribit data pointing to a rally up to $2,200. However, a month after the scheduled update i.e. September 15-16, the demand for call options falls significantly. This suggests that traders are willing to have greater downside protection and hedge their positions after a strong rally in a very short time. The Glassnode analysts wrote:
“Post Merge, the left tail is pricing in significantly higher implied volatility, indicating traders are paying a premium for ‘sell-the-news’ put-option protection post-Merge”.
On the other hand, Ethereum co-founder Vitalik Buterin believes that the Merge upgrade has yet to be priced in. It will be interesting to see how well ETH holds up following the Merge event. The global macros continue to show uncertainty with inflation in the U.S. and parts of Europe continuing to stay significantly high.