Ether, the digital token that powers smart contract platform Ethereum, will experience a “monumental” breakout as soon as smart contracts can accept outside data, predicted analyst Ian McLeod.
“We can expect Ethereum to hit $500 by the end of 2018,” stated McLeod, a digital currency investor and trader. Such a rally would require the digital currency to rise more than 100% from current price levels, according to CoinMarketCap data.
Oracles, which help smart contracts gather information from the outside or “real” world, will help drive these price gains by bolstering Ethereum’s adoption, he stated.
However, not everyone agrees with McLeod, as market observers offered mixed opinions on his forecast.
[Ed. note: Investing in cryptocoins or tokens is highly speculative and the market is largely unregulated. Anyone considering it should be prepared to lose their entire investment.]
Some market observers focused on the digital currency market’s recent upside.
“The entire crypto market has been showing slow but steady gains lately,” said Mati Greenspan, senior market analyst for social trading platform eToro.
“I could easily see this developing into a full on rally into the year end.”
Joshua Frank, co-founder of cryptocurrency analytics platform TheTIE.io, also offered an optimistic point of view.
He emphasized that while the sentiment surrounding ether was negative for much of the first half of 2018, the digital token started to “gain significant momentum” “beginning in late June.”
Then, in September, trading volume “increased significantly,” said Frank.
“The combination of positive sentiment and increased volume has driven the price of Ethereum up in October and November, and if those conditions stay the same we expect further growth in price,” he stated.
Any potential rally in ether prices could encounter notable resistance if companies with significant holdings of the digital tokens start selling them, noted cryptocurrency analyst Garrett Keirns.
“Before we start romanticizing the notion of a renewed ETH bull-run, we still need to remember the amount of ETH held by many popular ICOs in their respective treasuries.”
“There are still substantial amounts of Eth that could be sold to tamper down a potential rally,” noted Keirns, citing figures from blockchain analytics platform Dapp Capitulation.
While oracles could serve as a catalyst and help bolster sentiment in the overall Ethereum community, “there would need to be a use case,” he emphasized.
Frank also weighed in on this particular subject, framing it through the lens of social media activity.
“Oracles could be a potential driver for further upwards price movement for Ethereum, but it is not a frequent topic that has thus far been discussed on Twitter.”
“It will be interesting to see whether conversations around blockchain and more specifically Ethereum oracles begin to increase, and what, if any, effect that has on future price movement.”
Disclosure: I own some bitcoin, bitcoin cash and ether.