Ethereum is becoming a de facto crypto settlement network because of value transfers via ETH, WETH, and stablecoins.
Ethereum long trailed Bitcoin as the top blockchain network to move value, but those days may have been in the past as ETH and WETH transactions exceeded Bitcoin and began to pull back in recent weeks.
The average daily transaction volume of ETH and Wrapped ETH (WETH) over the last 30 days has risen to more than $13 billion, compared to just over $9 billion for Bitcoin, according to data collected by Money Movers and given by CoinMetrics. (ETH only narrowly exceeded Bitcoin at one point.)
Ethereum Value Flows started to outpace Bitcoin on January 24 and have been expanding the lead ever since, now setting more than 40% more value every day on average. It’s another hint that Ethereum may have a bitcoin legacy as a practical digital currency tailored to the daily needs of casual users and hardcore traders alike.
Wrapped Ethereum allows the value of native ETH tokens to be exchanged alongside other ERC-20 tokens built on the Ethereum protocol. Ether tokens arrived before the implementation of the ERC-20 standard, so WETH was created as an easy way to use the value of native ETH tokens on the thriving network they helped build. But the value of transactions made in WETH or native ETH is effectively the same, since both methods use Ethereum to send value from one location to another.
Adding the value of transactions to the Ethereum network through dollar-denominated stablecoins USDC and DAI increases the difference even further, with almost 80 percent more dollar-denominated value being transferred over the last 30 days compared to Bitcoin.
It is a testament to the growing potential of a Turing-complete blockchain, such as Ethereum, to process large transactions without intermediaries such as banks. The network will exploit the power of dollar-denominated stablecoins and a suite of creative ERC-20 tokens that deliver new financial primitives such as governance tokens or liquidity provider pools.
Even without WETH, stablecoins, or any of the thousands of ERC-20 tokens being exchanged on a regular basis, the transfer of value from native ETH transactions has been almost equal to Bitcoin (about 90%) over the last 30 days. Compare that to a year ago, when native ETH saw just 13 percent of Bitcoin’s value traffic, and it’s simple to see how much things have changed. Perhaps one year from now, we could be looking at a new king in the crypt economy.
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