On Feb. 12, Ethereum (ETH) price peaked at $2,633, just shy of its 2024 top, while Bitcoin (BTC) raced above the $50,000 for the first time since 2022.
Will ETH price reclaim $3,000 in the coming days?
Ethereum derivative traders have intensified bullish bets
Ethereum and Bitcoin price action have been closely correlated for many years. This has sparked optimism that BTC hitting the $50,000 milestone on Feb. 12 could open the doors to ETH making a similar bullish upswing.
In the ETH derivatives markets, there has been an noticeable increase in the spate at which speculative traders are placing leveraged bullish bets.
CryptoQuant’s funding rate represents the aggregate percentage of fees paid by perpetual futures traders to keep their positions open.
The chart below, shows the ETH funding rate rose to 0.4% on Feb. 13, signaling that speculative traders are placing more leveraged bets on an imminent ETH price upswing.
Notably this is its highest in more than 40-days dating back Jan. 8, when investors were piling on bullish positions ahead of the Bitcoin spot ETF verdict.
Concisely put, rising values of positive funding rates indicates that long position holders are showing paying increased fees to short traders, in anticipation that an imminent price upswing will yield outsized profits.
ETH is trading just below the $2,660 mark, at the time of writing on Feb. 13. Hence, this surge in ETH funding rates right after BTC crossing the $50,000 milestone indicates an overwhelming bullish outlook that an Ethereum price rally toward $3,000 could soon follow.
US whales are ramping their ETH purchases
US-based corporate entities have further intensified efforts to score an ETH spot ETF approval in H1 2024. On Feb. 12, Frank Templeton became the latest asset manager to file ETH derivative applications with the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).
It appears that the institutional participants are backing up their optimism with rapid ETH purchases in the spot markets. Cryptoquant’s Coinbase Premium index tracks the intra-day difference in Ethereum prices quoted on Coinbase Pro exchange and Binance.
As depicted below, Ethereum Coinbase Premium index stood at 0.04 on Feb. 13 and has been trending in positive values since Feb. 8. And during that
This critical metric is based on the premise that Binance dominates the retail trading market, the majority of Coinbase pro clientele is dominated by US-based corporates and high-networth investors looking to trade within a more regulated environment.
Hence, positive values of the Coinbase Premium index means that ETH quoted prices on Coinbase have been consistently higher than Binance, indicating that the whales’ buying pressure on Coinbase Pro has exceeded retail activity on Binance.
This pattern has often appeared in the build up to major ETH price rallies. Unsurprisingly, ETH price has gained 11% since the whales dialed up the buying pressure on Feb. 8.
Combined with the dominant bullish sentiment among the speculative traders, this unusual buying trend observed among the whales could send ETH price to its next milestone target at $3,000.
ETH price forecast: $3,000 target in focus
In summary, speculative traders showing optimism with rising funding rates and the buying pressure from US-based whales have put ETH price on an upward trajectory.
And based on the historical patterns associated with these bullish metrics, Ethereum price is likely to make another leg-up toward the $3,000 area.
However, the bulls face major roadblock at the $2,750 range. IntoTheBlock’s in/out of the money data shows that, 878,100 addresses had acquired 671,830 ETH at the average price of $2,760.
If the bulls can scale this initial resistance level, it could generate momentum to push for $3,000 target as predicted.
On the flip side, ETH price could enter a negative trend if the bears can force a downswing below $2,000. But this scenario seems unlikely in the short-term. The chart above shows that 3 million holders acquire 6.2 million ETH at the average price of $2,300. If those holders defend their position ETH will like a solid short-term support around the $2,350 level.