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Vitalik Buterin Defends a Rollup-Centric Future for Ethereum

Ethereum creator Vitalik Buterin seeks a way to tame the centralization of blockchain to a level where its users can still enjoy a trustless and censorship-resistant network.

In his most recent blog post titled ‘Endgame’ from December 6, Buterin suggested a future for the average “very big blockchain” consisting of very high block frequency, very high block size, many thousands of transactions per second that is also highly centralized as there are only a few dozens or hundreds of nodes that can afford to run a full node.

Ethereum creator suggested that a “plausible roadmap” for such blockchain would be to divide block producing and block validation to other parties and to create conditions where anyone may become a validator and constantly control the centralized network of block producers to prevent censorship.

According to Buterin, rollups cannot save the blockchain from a centralized future simply because “no single rollup succeeds at holding anywhere close to the majority of Ethereum activity”. However, Buterin pointed out that Ethereum’s current rollup-centric roadmap is beneficial to the network as long as it is open to all future scenarios.

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Mean Transaction Volumes of USDT, BTC, and ETH Increased, Glassnode Reports

Users of blockchain services are sending larger amounts of USDT, BTC, and ETH than months before. According to Glassnode Alerts, the average volume of USDT transferred reached a six-month high of 71,124,260 USDT.

The research company recorded a three-month high for Bitcoin, averaging 734.765 BTC, up 0.904 BTC from yesterday’s three-month high. Mean transaction volumes of Ethereum are also at a monthly peak of 4.041 ETH, an increase of 0.013 ETH since yesterday.

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1inch Network Raises $175M in a Series B Funding Round

DEX aggregator 1inch Network announced the closure of a $175 million funding round led by Amber Group, a crypto-financial services firm. Following this news, the price of the 1INCH token jumped from $3.5 to $4.2 within an hour.

1inch aggregates decentralized protocols to offer access to their liquidity and token swap rates. The funding will be spent on 1inchPro, a service which will comply with regulations in the US and Europe, as well as on building new protocols.

Source: TradingView

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Ethereum 2.0 Devs Call for Help from the Community with Testing the Merge

Ethereum network is closing on its major milestone in the transition to Eth2.0, and according to developers, there’s a possibility for all Ethereum enthusiasts to contribute to the upcoming Merge of the Ethereum mainnet with the PoS Beacon Chain.

The call for the community to help test the Merge was posted on Twitter by Marius van der Wijden on November 29. The new community testing program has three types of tasks meant for non-technical users, developers unfamiliar with blockchain and blockchain-savvy techies.

All participants are encouraged to share as much documentation as possible with a hashtag #TestingTheMerge. Despite van der Wijden noting that community testers will not be compensated for their help, he was overwhelmed with the influx of responses from volunteers.

The Merge is a long-awaited transition of the Ethereum network from proof-of-work to proof-of-stake consensus algorithm, which is currently implemented on the underlying Beacon Chain. According to the developers, the Merge is set to be complete by Q1 or Q2 of 2022.

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Over $5.6B Is Now Locked on Ethereum Layer Two

The total value locked on Ethereum layer two solutions has reached a new all-time high of $5.64 billion.

According to the data from analytics platform L2beat, layer 2 TVL has more than doubled over the past couple of months driven by ever-growing gas fees on Ethereum’s mainnet which has been increased by 700% over the past four months.

Arbitrum is accounted for $2.67 billion TVL or around 45% of the market, followed by a decentralized derivatives exchange dYdX with $975 million in TVL, and the Loopring L2 DEX with $580 million locked up.

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Half of LPs on Uniswap v3 Are Losing Money

Almost half of liquidity providers on Uniswap v3 are losing money due to impermanent loss, a recent research found. A report provided by Topaz Blue and the Bancor Protocol shows that 49.5% of LPs receive negative returns on the platform, famous for highest fees reflected by high trading volume.

The authors studied 43% of all of Uniswap v3’s liquidity pools from May 5, to Sep. 20, 2021. For the given period, those pools have generated $199 million in fees from $108.5 billion in trading volume. And during that time frame, the pools in question suffered $260 million in impermanent losses, resulting in $60 million in net total losses.

From a total of 17 analyzed pools, only three received net positive gains – WBTC/USDC, AXS/WETH, and FTM/WETH. Impermanent loss outweighed the gains in 80% of checked pools, with MKR/ETH pool showing the worst results resulting in loss for 74% of LPs.

The report suggests average users might receive better gains from their portfolios while just holding the assets without providing liquidity.

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Number of DEX Increased by 100% in Two Years, Chainalysis Reported

Chainalysis published a report on the competitive landscape of cryptocurrency exchanges. According to the analytics firm, the researchers decided to look at the dynamics of this market when they noticed that for the first time in several years of consistent growth, the number of active crypto exchanges began to decline – in August 2021 there were almost 200 fewer exchanges registered than in the same month in 2020.

Source: Chainanalysis

However, the study showed that the overall growth trend still continued. About 205 DEXs were noted in Q3 this year, which is 100% more than in 2019. The number of OTC (over-the-counter) brokers has also increased by 50%, there are now about 150.

“Across all categories however, the number of small exchanges has dropped, suggesting the exchange market can no longer support niche players. The lesson? Exchanges need to reach a mass audience, or a small audience of large-scale traders, in order to stay in business.” – Chainalysis concluded.

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Optimistic Ethereum Will Shut Down Today for Its Biggest Upgrade

Optimistic Ethereum layer two network is going to shut down today for a few hours, needed to undergo its EVM Equivalence upgrade.

According to OE’s developers, who refer to EVM Equivalence as the biggest and the most significant upgrade in the project’s timeline, the downtime is expected to last for 4-6 hours. The upgrade process is set to begin at 10am PST on November 11.

The goal of EVM Equivalence upgrade is to achieve full compliance of Optimistic Ethereum with the whole stack of the layer 1 mainnet that is not always done in other L2 EVM implementations.

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Bitcoin and Ethereum Continue to Surge, Reaching New ATHs

Bitcoin and Ethereum don’t seem to stop their surge anytime soon as the prices of both market’s main cryptocurrencies continue to surge, almost simultaneously reaching new heights on November 9.

Sorce: TradingView

According to CoinGecko, the new all-time high for BTC is now above $68,640, while the record price for ETH is set to $4,857. Both assets have shown similar price dynamics for the past week: with BTC up to 11.2% and ETH up to 11% for the past seven days.

Sorce: TradingView

According to a report from blockchain analytics provider Glassnode, the recent surge of Bitcoin’s price is directly related to a reluctance to sell from big investors. Glassnode reports that there’s now a 85% share of the Bitcoin supply that has remained inactive for the past three months.

Same goes for miners, who show a persistent resistance to sell their BTC holdings. According to CryptoQuant, outflows from miner wallets have been low for the past weeks and months, with few exceptions.

As the data from CoinGecko shows, the global cryptocurrency market cap has reached $3.08 trillion today, growing by 2.0% for the last 24 hours. This growth was fueled by some altcoins reaching their new ATHs, such as Solana’s SOL and Polkadot’s DOT.

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Gas Fees on Ethereum Got Halved in Less than a Week

While Ethereum’s ETH has set a new record this week hitting a new ATH at $4,782 on Monday, the gas fees continue to plummet following a sharp drop in trading volume on Ethereum.

According to Etherscan, the average transaction fee for transferring ERC-20 tokens is now $26.45, dropping more than by half compared to $56 on Tuesday.

Source: Etherscan

In parallel to price soaring and gas fees plummeting, the hashrate on Ethereum continues to grow, rising as high as 830,058.8955 GH/s on Sunday. To compare, last Monday Ethereum’s hash rate hit 812,769 GH/s.