The price of Ether is trading above $200 for a week now, after recording over 56% gains last month.
The second-largest digital currency, however, is still down 87% from its all-time high of $1,570.
Ether price like other altcoins is lagging today while Bitcoin is back on the move but its network has been pretty busy for some time now.
Stablecoins Driving Ethereum Network Growth
The 7-day average of the total number of confirmed transactions on Ethereum surged to 845,400 on April 30, last seen in July 2019. Last weekend, this average surpassed 837k.
Also, the transaction count that plummeted to a 12-month low in February has since spiked 72%.
Given that stablecoins are the star of the recent rally, with the market cap of stablecoins doubling to almost $10 billion in the past two months, Ethereum is expected to reflect that growth.
The major stablecoins like Tether (USDT), USD Coin (USDC), Gemini dollar (GUSD), Binance USD (BUSD), MakerDAO’s DAI, Paxos Standard (PAX), Huobi’s HUSD, and trueUSD (TUSD) are all based on the Ethereum blockchain.
As of April 21, the market cap of stablecoin operating on Ethereum blockchain was about $9 billion, as per Ryan Sean Adam, founder of Mythos Capital.
This growth in dollar-backed stablecoin coincided with the shortage of dollars in the coronavirus hit economy. Just as the US Federal Reserve has been injecting massive liquidity in the market by printing money, to meet the growing demand in the crypto market, stablecoins has been minting the new supply.
Stablecoins were not only providing an alternative to USD but also a store of value during the collapse in the bitcoin and crypto market.
Extremely Busy Network
Stablecoins however, are not the only contributor to the Ethereum network’s growth. There has been a sharp rise in the number of addresses holding more than or equal to 32 ETH, an amount required to become a validator and enable staking.
With the launch of Ethereum 2.0 testnet last month, the number of validator addresses has jumped to a record high.
Moreover, Ethereum gas usage is back to an all-time high while the network utilization remains close to full capacity at 90%. The pending transactions per minute on the network has been keeping above 60k for the most part in 2020 which climbed over 76,200 today.
Meanwhile, the average fee paid has increased considerably from $0.14 to $0.20 and the median gas prices jumped from 8.4 GWEI to 11.92 GWEI.
Moreover, Ethereum difficulty is up 3.5% in the past 24 hours. In January, the network difficulty was at 1,983 which has now risen to 1,253.
Meanwhile, the ever-growing unique addresses are fast approaching 1 billion, having reached almost 96.4 million.