Ether and ADA in the green ahead of respective upgrades: This week in markets

Quick Take

  • Bitcoin was trading at $19,704 today, while ether was at $1,551.
  • Ether and ADA marked the biggest weekly gains of the top 10 cryptocurrencies by market cap. 

In a mixed week for crypto markets, ether and ADA made gains, just weeks out from upgrades on both blockchains.  

Bitcoin has lagged so far in September, down 1.49% at $19,704 over the past week, having surrendered gains made on Friday following jobs data in the U.S. Elsewhere, ether gained more than 4% and was trading at $1,551, while Cardano’s native token ADA soared 10.69%.  

The Merge is set to happen in September, completing Ethereum’s move from proof of work to proof of stake after years of planning. During the build-up, traders were busy betting on the upgrade.  

Elsewhere, Ethereum co-founder Charles Hoskinson’s Cardano has a firm date for its own upgrade, dubbed vasil. The blockchain’s token, cardano, rose more than 10% to $0.498 

Traders continue to bet on The Merge 

In August, ether derivatives soared while bitcoin declined, and LedgerPrime noted in its market report this week that bearish bitcoin options strategies have been predominant.  

“Strategies such as the bear put spread (2.8K), with limited risk have been predominant this week; some investors consider prices are low enough and as a consequence, strategies such as the bull call spread are gaining momentum,” it said. 

In fact, ether strategies were dominated by the bull call spread, according to the fund, as it was “the most traded strategy this week at 42K in volume, followed by the bear diagonal spread.” Interestingly, the investment firm said calls and puts traded evenly during the week, “with a clear interest in near-term downside exposure, while optimism for the end of the year remains strong.” 

Elsewhere, the U.S. non-farm payroll report on Friday held more significance than in previous months, as noted by crypto trading firm QCP Capital ahead of time on Wednesday.  

“We have not looked at NFP this year at all, relegating it to our 2nd tier data series behind all the various inflation releases. However, after last month's blow-out print, we now assign a 25/75 importance to the upcoming NFP/CPI to decide the Sep FOMC.” 

Non-farm payrolls measure the number of workers, excluding farm workers and workers in several other classifications, and it is released on the first Friday of each month. The figure came in at 315,000 for August, slightly below estimates of 318,000.  

The U.S. unemployment rate rose to 3.7%, up from 3.5% in July — however, it still hovered around a multi-decade low.

© 2023 The Block. All Rights Reserved. This article is provided for informational purposes only. It is not offered or intended to be used as legal, tax, investment, financial, or other advice.