3 reasons why REN price is up 340% from its July swing low

Interoperability has become one of the driving themes within the crypto market and as the blockchain ecosystem evolves into an interconnected web of layer-one protocols, the importance of communication and efficiency among decentralized applications (dApps) will also increase.Ren (REN), a blockchain protocol designed to provide interoperability and liquidity between different blockchain platforms, has started gaining traction over the past month and a half as activity in the decentralized finance (DeFi) sector has been on the rise. Data from Cointelegraph Markets Pro and TradingView shows that after reaching a low of $00.41 on Aug. 9, the price of REN has climbed 185% to a daily high at $1.16 on Sept. 15 as its 24-hour trading volume spiked 443% to $673 million. REN/USDT 1-day chart. Source: TradingViewThree reasons for the price growth seen in REN include the steadily increasing activity and total value locked on RenVM, the launch of a bridge to Arbitrum and the release of RenVM Greycore on the network’s testnet. Rising volume and total value lockedREN’s bullish momentum can be found in the data for the total network volume and total value locked (TVL).Total network volume and total value locked on Ren. Source: Ren ProjectAs 2021 progressed, new chains were added to the list of bridges supported, which now includes Ethereum, Binance Smart Chain, Solana, Polygon, Fantom, Avalanche and Arbitrum. Each new bridge has helped to increase the volume and TVL on the Ren network, which has coincided with moves seen in REN p. REN price follows the Bridge to ArbitrumThe spike in price seen on Sept. 15 was due, in large part, to the release of the Arbitrum bridge, an Ethereum (ETH) layer-two scaling solution Arbitrum, which is designed to host popular decentralized applications in a fast, low-fee environment. The Ethereum network has been plagued by high fees and delayed transaction times, which have hampered the ability of many users to use DeFi or nonfungible token (NFT) related protocols on the network. Arbitrum’s low-cost environment has proven to be an attractive DeFi environment for BTC holders who are now able to migrate to the layer-two solution and interact on the network with renBTC. The total value locked on Arbitrum via the Ren protocol was $7.75 million as of Sept. 15 and is represented by the green line in the value locked chart above. Related: Solana and Arbitrum knocked offline, while Ethereum evades attackREN marches toward decentralizationA third reason behind the increase in activity for REN was the release of RenVM Greycore on the network’s testnet on Sept. 13, a move that was done as the project works toward its goal of full decentralization. Greycore is a semi-decentralized validator set of nodes that are operated by reputable DeFi projects and it helps to add an additional layer of protection for the protocol. The first project to join Greycore was BadgerDAO, a DeFi project focused on building projects that bring BTC to DeFi. According to data from Cointelegraph Markets Pro, market conditions for REN have been favorable for some time.The VORTECS™ Score, exclusive to Cointelegraph, is an algorithmic comparison of historical and current market conditions derived from a combination of data points including market sentiment, trading volume, recent price movements and Twitter activity.VORTECS™ Score (green) vs. REN price. Source: Cointelegraph Markets ProAs seen on the chart above, the VORTECS™ Score for REN turned green on Sept. 13 and climbed to a high of 71 on Sept. 14 just as the price of REN began to increase 72% over the next two days. The views and opinions expressed here are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Cointelegraph.com. Every investment and trading move involves risk, you should conduct your own research when making a decision.

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Avalanche Foundation raises $230M to support DeFi ecosystem

The Avalanche Foundation has announced a significant $230M investment from a venture capital group spearheaded by Polychain and Three Arrows Capital for the purpose of supporting the growth of the DeFi ecosystem and their ever-expanding list of applications that utilize the blockchain.Since launching in September 2020, Avalanche has cultivated a burgeoning influence on the DeFi landscape, with its smart contracts platform now providing the infrastructure for over 270 industry projects including SushiSwap, Chainlink, Circle, and The Graph, among others.The $230M capital — raised through the private sale of its native token — will be allocated by the foundation across a multitude of use-cases within its blockchain, including “grants, token purchases, and various forms of investments and technology support.”Emin Gün Sirer, director at the Avalanche Foundation, shared his thoughts on platform’s recent advancements and future potential:“Avalanche has quickly turned promise and potential into real-world impact and value creation for DeFi users and developers. The community of builders rallying around the network is a testament to its competitive edge, and there is still so much potential yet to be tapped at the intersection of institutional and decentralized finance on Avalanche.”Data from CoinMarketCap reveals that Avalanche’s native cryptocurrency token AVAX has surged 50% this week, a figure only surpassed by HBAR and CRV in the Top 100 list. This places the blockchain project at the respectable ranking of #13, with a total market capitalization of $14B.Related: Zabu token price flatlines after $3.2M attack on Avalanche blockchainDeFi platform Aave yesterday announced a future community-wide vote on whether the “deployment of smart contracts in Avalanche C-Chain and activation of liquidity mining program” would be beneficial to the collaboration of the two ecosystems.

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EU regulator sees crypto as sign of increased risk-taking in current climate

The European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) has published its report on trends, risks and vulnerabilities in the EU markets during the first half of 2021 (1H21).Its takeaways included the argument that crypto markets’ extraordinary volatility and growth make a compelling case for the need for a targeted regulatory regime, as sketched out in the European Commission’s proposed Markets in Crypto-Assets regulations.Much has been riding on the EU and global market’s recovery during 1H21 amid the ongoing impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. ESMA’s report notes that the economic outlook has continued to improve overall, with the European economy now forecast to reach its pre-pandemic output by the end of 2022, earlier than had been expected. This recovery has been fueled by the relaxation of public health restrictions, some reduction in uncertainty, and central banks’ activism in providing supportive monetary policies. When it comes to the medium-term risks of the current climate, ESMA has taken the crypto markets as a bellwether of market sentiment and dynamics during the past six months:”Rising valuations across asset classes, massive price swings in cryptoassets and event-driven risks observed in 1H21 amid elevated trading volumes raise questions about increased risk-taking behaviour and possible market exuberance.”This exuberance, in the ESMA’s view, has been visible in the GameStop saga and the broader rise of social media-fueled retail trading, coupled with the huge price growth in crypto assets in the first quarter of this year. Much of this increase in trading activity has been happening outside the EU’s regulatory perimeter, the report underlines, raising investor protection concerns. The ESMA attributed rising consumer confidence during this period to a range of factors, including innovative new business models and gamified features in online and mobile trading platforms. Parallel to the retail trading boom, ESMA is keeping a close eye on Decentralized Finance (DeFi), noting that the 47 billion euros ($55.3 billion) locked in DeFi in early September was down from its heights in mid-May, yet up 1,200% from end-July 2020. The ESMA recognized DeFi’s benefits, including disintermediation, 24/7 availability and censorship resistance, and noted that the increasing use of stablecoins and central bank digital currencies are likely to make the boundaries between traditional finance and DeFi more porous over time. However, especially due to institutional investors’ proactivity, the ESMA considered that there is a growing possibility that DeFi risks will spill over into the real economy, even though the market remains small for the time being.Related: EU securities regulator warns about risks of ‘non-regulated’ cryptocurrenciesThe report also noted that institutional investors are starting to consider Bitcoin’s (BTC) environmental impact in terms of their ESG targets, which is feeding into the growing interest in Ether (ETH). Alongside its environmental credentials, the ESMA attributed ETH’s success to its smart contract functionality, the DeFi boom, and the blockchain’s role in the nonfungible token ecosystem.The regulator’s assessment has been echoed by Pantera Capital CEO Dan Morehead, who this summer argued that the blockchain’s upgrade will likely help Ether to outflank Bitcoin as the largest cryptocurrency.

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