Bitcoin seems to have a strong rival with market capitalization surpassing $6 billion.

Ethereum has been rising since March jumping from $12 to $68.94 as of the moment of writing. Today, the price reached its top of $71.90 at 00:44 GMT. The market capitalization has surpassed $6 billion and now makes up $6,312,490,830.

Experts enumerate several possible reasons for Ethereum rise. There are numerous new projects coming in.

One of them is Ethereum ETF that is currently struggling to get an approval. On July 15, 2016, the EtherIndex Ether Trust team filed an application for an Ether ETF to the SEC. The proposal read:

“Shares are issued only in one or more blocks of Shares called “Baskets” in exchange for Ether. The Trust will issue and redeem the Shares in Baskets only to certain Authorized Participants on an ongoing basis as described in the “Plan of Distribution” section of this Prospectus. On creation, Baskets will be distributed to the Authorized Participants by the Trust in exchange for the delivery to the Trust of the appropriate number of Ether.”

The SEC has recently unveiled that it is now considering the ETF and soon will start working with appropriate parties and persons of interest to come to a final conclusion whether the EtherIndex Ether Trust is approved or not.

“Institution of proceedings does not indicate that the Commission has reached any conclusions with respect to any of the issues involved. Rather, as described below, the Commission seeks and encourages interested persons to provide comments on the proposed rule change,” the SEC said.

The approval of Ether ETF will mean the launch of regulated channel to invest in Ethereum for institutional and high profile investors.

Ripple, a Blockchain-based settlement network that deal with cross-border and cross-bank payments for financial institutions, has recently welcomed several large banks including the $60 bln Spanish banking giant BBVA and one of Turkey’s largest private banks Akbank to join it to enhance speed, scalability and cost of global transactions.

David Patterson, Ripple Director of Corporate Communications, said that BBVA will help employing its public Blockchain to optimize transactions and settle assets. Partnership with BBVA will allow conducting real-time payments between Europe and Mexico.

“The world’s largest banks have been the first to adopt Ripple’s technology and the network effect from our customer base is accelerating. People know Ripple is the only Blockchain solution for payments that is proven in the real world and it’s driving demand from financial institutions of all kinds and sizes because they want to stay ahead of the curve,” Brad Garlinghouse, Ripple CEO, stated.

Ethereum has already grown from $1 billion at the beginning of the year to the current $6 billion, not too far from bitcoin’s current market cap and around the same levels as bitcoin’s market cap last year. It seems that Bitcoin has acquired a serious competitor that aims to take a lead on the cryptocurrency market.

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