Ethereum extended its gains on Wednesday to reach fresh record highs above $2,700. The world’s second largest cryptocurrency by market cap was boosted by news that the European Investment Bank (EIB) plans to launch an inaugural “digital bond” sale on the Ethereum blockchain network.
Unnamed sources speaking with Bloomberg stated that a €100 million issuance of two-year notes is scheduled to be priced on Tuesday April 28th. The sale of the Ethereum-based bonds is being led by Goldman Sachs, Banco Santander, and Societe Generale.
Cryptocurrencies were lifted broadly on Monday by news that JPMorgan Chase is plannning to offer an actively managed Bitcoin fund to certain clients. The fund could reportedly roll out as early as this summer. The move came as a surprise to some, in light of the fact that JPMorgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon was at one time famously sceptical of cryptocurrency. In September of 2017, he called Bitcoin a “fraud worse than tulip bulbs.”
JPMorgan Chase was also among the recent investors in ConsenSys, a software development firm that builds cryptocurrency-related infrastructure. ConsenSys was founded in 2014 by Joseph Lubin, who was formerly Chief Operating Officer of Ethereum. In April, ConsenSys secured $65 million in funding from JPMorgan Chase, UBS and Mastercard among others.
Other positive news came in the form of PayPal CEO Dan Schulman’s statement that demand for cryptocurrency is much higher than expected. In an April 25th interview with Time, Schulman said “Demand on the crypto side has been multiple-fold to what we initially expected. There’s a lot of excitement.”
The recent unveiling of US President Joe Biden’s plans to raise capital gains taxes added some pressure to cryptocurrencies and financial markets as a whole. Biden’s plan includes measures to change the treatment of capital gains so that the rich pay higher taxes on investment income. The plan also targets the so-called “carried interest” loophole in US tax code.
Ethereum has gained over 250% in 2021 to date and a staggering 1,200% over the past year. The cryptocurrency originally authored by Vitalik Buterin and Gavin Wood was released in July of 2015.