Ethereum is having difficulty keeping its richest investors in line as its native token, Ether (ETH), hints at logging more losses in the near term.

Blockchain data analytics service Glassnode revealed that the number of Ethereum addresses holding at least 1,000 ETH dropped to 6,292 this Monday, the lowest reading since April 2017. At its year-to-date peak, the numbers were 7,239 in January.

Number of Ethereum addresses with balance of at least 1,000 ETH. Source: Glassnode

On-chain analysts typically observe ETH distributions among addresses to realize retail and institutional sentiments. They consider wallets that hold above 1,000 ETH (around $3.92 million at currency exchange rates) as “whales,” primarily for their ability to influence interim market trends via large sell and/or buy orders.

But as the numbers of these so-called whales drop, it reflects an ongoing selling trend among the richest Ethereum wallet owners. For instance, the number of Ethereum addresses that hold at least 10,000 ETH (or around $39.20 million) has also plunged, from 1,208 in June to 1,156 at the time of this writing, marking an almost 4.5% decline.

Number of Ethereum addresses with a balance of at least 10,000 ETH. Source: Glassnode

But, on a year-to-date timeframe, the numbers have gone up from 1,065 to 1,156, just as the cost to purchase 1 ETH, in the same period, has jumped nearly 450%. 

Small investors are accumulating

Unlike whales, wallets that hold ETH in small quantities have been at the forefront of Ether’s 2021 price rally.

For example, Glassnode’s data shows that the number of…


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