End-of-Week Ethereum: Merge News Fails to Hold Price Up, Traders Discuss Merge-Related Sell-Off, Binance Joins Exchanges Preparing for Possible Fork
The price of Ethereum’s native token ETH fell over the past 24 hours, while developers identified several bugs and traders started fearing the Merge could become a ‘sell the news’-type of event.
On Friday at 09:10 UTC, ETH was down by 2.8% for the past 24 hours to a price of USD 1,661. The drop was sharper than for bitcoin (BTC), and enough to make ETH today’s second-worst performer among the top 10 cryptoassets by market capitalization after solana (SOL).
This stands in sharp contrast to it being the best performer in that category just the day before.
The price drop followed reports from Thursday that Ethereum developers have identified bugs in the software ahead of the Merge, or Ethereum’s transition from proof-of-work (PoW) to proof-of-stake (PoS).
Details about one such bug were shared by Ethereum developer Péter Szilágyi. Writing on Twitter, Szilágyi said that the bug, found in Geth 1.10.22, “causes the trie/state to go bad,” adding that he is “trying to find and fix the issue.”
Daniel Celeda, an Ethereum core developer and consultant for Ethereum development firm Nethermind, said he had encountered a similar problem:
Recently we've had similar regressions in @nethermindeth so we've decided to switch to a strict stabilization phase before #TheMerge. We merge only fixes to the master branch currently. https://t.co/erzgN1Z0wV— DanielC (@_D4nie1_) August 23, 2022
A potential ‘sell the news’ event
While developers discussed the technical risks heading into the Merge, traders were – as always – focused on price. Among them was the popular economist and crypto trader Alex Krüger, who warned of risks to market players as the Merge nears.
Writing on Twitter, Krüger reminded his followers that bitcoin fell 20% two days before its last halving, and 10% just hours before the halving, calling it “a classic case of positioning driven ‘sell the news’.”
It would “make sense for ETH to do the same,” Krüger wrote.
That said the merge-halving analogy is far from perfect as the halving is something set in stone, by code, where nothing can go wrong, where the merge is something implemented that can go most definitively wrong. The latter will bring in heavy uncertainty on the day of the merge.— Alex Krüger (@krugermacro) August 25, 2022
Binance confirms support for potential hard forks
Meanwhile, crypto exchange Binance – the largest exchange by trading volume – announced on Thursday that it plans to support any tokens that may come as a result of hard forks during Ethereum’s switch to proof-of-stake.
Writing in an announcement on its website, Binance said any forked tokens will be credited to users at a 1:1 ratio with ETH, while confirming that such tokens can be withdrawn from the platform.
It added that a potential listing of a forked token on the exchange will be subject to “the same strict listing review process as Binance does for any other coin/token,” and said it “does not guarantee any listings.”
– ETH is Best Top 10 Performer as First Stage of Merge Confirmed; It’s ‘Obviously a Very Tradable Event’
– 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
– Buterin Says Ethereum Will be ‘55% Complete’ Post-Merge
– Bitfinex Preps for ETH Fork
– Japan’s bitFlyer Will ‘Pay Close Attention’ to Any Ethereum Proof-of-Work Hard Fork
– US Sullivan Bank Partners with Bakkt to Enable BTC, ETH Support