Cryptocurrency Ethereum ETH/USD was launched in 2015 and over time has become the second most valuable in the crypto industry. Here's a look at the history of Ethereum and the value of an early investment today.
What happened: Ethereum was offered via a white paper by the co-founder Vitalik Buterin in 2014. Buterin launched the whitepaper with the goal of Ethereum adding scripts to facilitate application development and enforce binding contracts.
Ethereum was officially launched on July 30, 2015. In its first calendar year, Ethereum traded between $0.42 and $1.39 with a starting price of around $0.74 according to SoFi. The first Ethereum transaction was made on August 7, 2015, according to Global Data.
One of the events that helped Ethereum gain momentum was its listing on the cryptocurrency platform Coinbase Global Inc. PIECE OF MONEY in 2016. Ethereum became only the second cryptocurrency, after Bitcoin BTC/USDto be listed on the platform.
Over the years, there have been several major Ethereum events and updates, including the Ethereum 2.0 fork and Classic Ethereum ETC/USD.
Ethereum has maintained its position as one of the most valuable cryptocurrencies over the years, helped by the boom in non-fungible tokens in 2021. Many NFTs have been built on the Ethereum blockchain. A record sale of a Beeple NFT has sparked interest in NFTs and Ethereum.
While 2022 brought several cryptocurrency company bankruptcies and brought down the price of Ethereum, it was also the year of another big event for Ethereum with the merger that happened in September.
The Ethereum merger moved the cryptocurrency from proof-of-work, such as Bitcoin, to proof-of-stake.
The latest update called the Shanghai Update is scheduled to roll out on April 12, 2023. The update will do several things in the move towards proof-of-stake, including allowing validators to withdraw staked Ether.
Related link: How to buy Ethereum
Invest $1,000 in Ethereum: Now the second most valuable cryptocurrency with a market capitalization of $230 billion, Ethereum is one of the most followed and discussed cryptocurrencies.
An investment in the cryptocurrency in the year of its launch would have generated a strong return for investors.
While it was harder to invest in Ethereum before its inclusion on major cryptocurrency exchanges, investors were able to get the crypto after its launch.
Based on a starting price of $0.74, an investor could have purchased 1,351.35 ETH at launch.
The $1,000 investment in Ethereum at launch would be worth $2,579,200.12 today based on a price of $1,908.61 at the time of writing.
At its all-time high of $4,815 set in November 2021, investing $1,000 in Ethereum at launch would have been worth $6,506,750.25.
Ethereum has traded between $896.11 and $3,173.45 over the past 52 weeks. There is no guarantee that the cryptocurrency will return to yearly or historical highs.
While many missed investing in Ethereum at first, the exercise shows that sometimes investing a small amount in a high-conviction idea can pay off hugely in the future.
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