The Chinese government is getting aggressive on cryptocurrencies. The People’s Bank of China has outlawed crypto-related activities just a few months after Beijing prohibited financial and payment institutions from providing cryptocurrency services, all part of the country’s own plans to introduce an indigenous digital currency. Nevertheless, cryptocurrencies are one of the more news-sensitive areas in the world of finance. So, it came as no surprise that both Bitcoin (CCC:BTC-USD) and Ethereum (CCC:ETH-USD), the second-largest digital currency, fell sharply due to the move.
It’s been a mixed week for the altcoin. Things started nicely for ETH, with a Monday intraweek high of $3,346.58 before the news caused a tailspin. The digital currency now finds itself with support at the 38.2% Fibonacci retracement level of $2,740 after falling through the $3,060 support level. All in all, it was a tough week for Ethereum.
However, the coming months are looking great for Ethereum. Updates are scheduled for the end of 2021 and into 2022. In the run-up to every upgrade, there has been a massive surge in the price of Ethereum, so now is the right time to load up on the coin, considering it’s trading at a discount after the selloff.
Ethereum Becomes Safer With Functionality
Ether played second fiddle to Bitcoin for a long time, although both have very different use cases. Bitcoin is envisioned as an alternative to national currencies. Meanwhile, Ethereum was developed to facilitate smart contracts and distributed apps.
As a result, use cases for Ethereum are wide-ranging. Considering this factor, Ethereum becomes a much better option than other highly speculative altcoins.
Take the NFT revolution as an example. Non-fungible tokens are digital assets up for purchase. Some examples are artwork, music, NBA clips and comic books. The Ethereum network produces unique IDs for NFTs, ensuring you have a distinct certificate of ownership for each digital asset.
Once the transaction takes place, Ethereum transfers the NFT’s unique ID to the buyer. The chances of the seller getting cheated are therefore eliminated. The popularity of these digital assets has skyrocketed this year, one of the many factors why Ether has also done well this year.
Similarly, growth in decentralized finance, or DeFi, is also boosting the value of ETH. The technology behind this concept removes intermediaries from a financial transaction, making the whole process smoother, efficient and anonymous.
Major Upgrades Incoming
Ethereum is transferring from a proof-of-work (PoW) to a proof-of-stake (PoS) network, with the change expected to occur by the end of 2022. The transition will lead to a substantial dip in the energy used by Ethereum and will place it in a better position versus its main peer, Bitcoin.
Governments worldwide are conscious of the climate challenge. One of the main criticisms leveled against Bitcoin is the amount of energy it consumes. It led to Tesla (NASDAQ:TSLA) CEO Elon Musk refusing to accept Bitcoin as a form of payment, which knocked the wind out of BTC.
According to the Ethereum Foundation (EF), ETH 2.0 will use 99.95% less energy than the current platform. So, for those investors looking for cryptos that have a competitive edge over Bitcoin, ETH is right up your alley.
Buy Ethereum for Utility
It can get a bit confusing when navigating the current crypto space. For example, altcoins like Dogecoin (CCC:DOGE-USD) and Shiba Inu (CCC:SHIB-USD) have generated a lot of interest this year. However, there are not a lot of use cases for either of these digital currencies. They are doing well primarily because of celebrity endorsements and hype.
The only way a cryptocurrency can ensure long-term viability is by creating more utility and functionality. On that end, Ethereum deserves a pat on the back. Yes, there is an off chance you can make short-term gains through trading altcoins with no inherent value. But you can lose all your savings investing on these as well.
However, as Ethereum keeps adding to its functionality, such as in the case of non-fungible tokens (NFTs) and decentralized finance, the value of Ether will see a corresponding rise. This growth is much more sustainable than celebrity-induced hype.
Hence, whenever there is a dip in value, you should load up on this one. And even if you want to trade this one, there is an incentive to buy ahead of the upgrades later this year.
On the publication date, Faizan Farooque did not have (either directly or indirectly) any positions in the securities mentioned in this article. The opinions expressed in this article are those of the writer, subject to the InvestorPlace.com Publishing Guidelines.
Faizan Farooque is a contributing author for InvestorPlace.com and numerous other financial sites. Faizan has several years of experience in analyzing the stock market and was a former data journalist at S&P Global Market Intelligence. His passion is to help the average investor make more informed decisions regarding their portfolio. Faizan does not directly own the securities mentioned above.