The amount of Ethereum locked across decentralized finance protocols and smart contracts have hit a new all-time high of over 9 million.
Ethereum has held on to most of its gains this year and this is largely because it is being used in the ever-expanding number of decentralized finance protocols.
According to figures from industry analytics provider, DefiPulse, the amount of ETH locked across the entire DeFi ecosystem is at a record 9.2 million.
At today’s prices of $1,800, that equates to $16.5 billion.
In terms of supply, it is around 8.3% of the total supply of Ethereum, which is a little over 115 million tokens. According to Santiment, the number of addresses holding 100-10K ETH has declined by around 7% since the asset hit its all-time high of $2,050 on Feb. 20.
NFT purveyor at FlamingoDAO, Chris Cable, commented that mid-range accounts holding over 100 ETH are putting it to work in DeFi smart contracts:
“Many/most of those 100-10,000 $ETH wallets are simply putting their ETH to work in #DeFi…”
According to analytics provider Glassnode, the amount of Ethereum locked in DeFi has grown steadily in the past three months, averaging 9.6% growth month-on-month, with the most recent period from Mar. 17 to Feb. 17 above that average at 11.2% growth.
Institutions, companies holding
On-chain data provider Sanitment also noted that whale accounts holding over 10K ETH have not sold, suggesting that they are owned or managed by exchanges, corporations, or institutional funds.
Industry analyst Anthony Sassano commented that after Bitcoin, companies are now turning towards Ethereum as an investment or store of value.
“ETH is slowly but surely being gobbled up by large companies and one company, Meitu, actually owns more ETH than BTC!”
This month, it was reported that Chinese app maker Meitu bought 15,000 ETH as part of a $40 million cryptocurrency investment.
Ethereum price outlook
At the time of writing, Ethereum was trading flat on the day at a little over $1,800. It has ranged around this level since the beginning of March, which lends more weight to the notion that big bag holders are not selling, and the rest is being used for DeFi yield farming.
ETH hit an intra-week high on Mar. 15 at $1,895 but has fallen back 4.7% over the week. Since the beginning of 2021, Ethereum has made 145% outperforming its big brother Bitcoin, which has made almost 100% in the same period.