End-of-Week Ethereum: Developers Firm Up Merge Date, Hedge Fund Investor Says Merge is ‘Not Priced In’, Aave Proposes Strongly Signaling Support for PoS
Ethereum (ETH) developers firmed up September 15 as the date when the highly anticipated Merge is estimated to happen, while Aave (AAVE) seeks to “strongly signal” its support for the PoS chain instead of PoW. Meanwhile, a crypto hedge fund manager says the Merge is not yet priced in by the market.
The September 15 date, which was first mentioned during last week’s Ethereum developer call, was confirmed in Thursday’s call, with the developers saying that things will likely go as planned as long as there is no massive shift in the hashrate. Ethereum developer Tim Beiko added:
“We got it. Mainnet release — that’s pretty exciting.”
With the Merge approaching – although it is still tentative and could change – participants on the call also discussed Ethereum’s 11th mainnet “shadow fork” occurring on Thursday, and according to a summary posted on Twitter by Beiko, the 34 nodes made it through “without issues,” with one node “simply not having synced.”
In addition, another topic discussed during the call was censorship resistance and whether the transition from the proof-of-work (PoW) consensus mechanism to proof-of-stake (PoS) will make the network less censorship resistant.
Among those who voiced their opinion on the issue, developer Marius van der Wijden called censorship resistance “the hill I am willing to die on.”
“If we start allowing users to be censored on Ethereum, then this whole thing does not make sense, and I will be leaving and starting something else,” he said.
Ethereum’s Terminal Total Difficulty (TTD) was brought up and re-confirmed.
“In short, TTD confirmed,” Beiko wrote in his summary on Twitter, adding that “the only thing that could cause the TTD to change would be a massive drop in hashrate once Bellatrix is hit.”
Bellatrix is the name of the upgrade that will start the entire Merge process, and it is estimated that about two weeks are needed between it and the actual Merge, though it could be less as well.
Ethereum’s hashrate on Thursday stood at 917.8 Thash/s, down slightly from 951.2 the day before, per data from BitInfoCharts.
Merge ‘not priced in’
Meanwhile, Hal Press, an investor and founder of crypto hedge fund North Rock Digital, wrote in the latest issue of the Bankless podcast’s newsletter that the Merge is “not priced in,” suggesting higher prices should be expected as the event nears.
Explaining the reason for this, Press said that any selling that is occurring in ETH now and over the “next few weeks” is mostly tactical selling with an aim to buy back later, either before or immediately after the Merge occurs.
“This dynamic means net outflows are measured,” Press wrote, adding that he expects hype around the Merge to “magnify significantly as the date comes into focus and the narrative is picked up by the mainstream media.”
Press’s view echoed July comments by Ethereum co-founder Vitalik Buterin. Speaking at Ethereum Community Conference (EthCC) at the time, Buterin said that while the Merge is “looking more and more in the front view mirror,” it is still not “priced in” – both in the market terms and in psychological narrative terms.
Aave’s support for PoS
As the Merge nears, uncertainty has also started to emerge in the community about potential forks of Ethereum. This follows calls by some miners to split the chain and preserve a PoW chain after Ethereum moves to PoS.
“To ensure continued existence of the protocol for the community, the Aave DAO should consider signaling strongly that the Aave Protocol should commit to the Ethereum Mainnet, running under Proof of Stake consensus,” the proposal said.
Meanwhile, Buterin on Thursday also reiterated his stance that, even though Ethereum is moving to proof-of-stake, he is not in favor of any form of ban on proof-of-work.
At 12:17 UTC on Friday, ETH was trading at USD 1,701, down 9% in a day and 10% in a week. It is up 11% in a month.
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