Celsius Network, the bankrupt cryptocurrency lending company, is gearing up to unstake approximately $465 million worth of Ethereum (ETH) as part of its efforts to compensate creditors. This development follows the company’s bankruptcy filing in July 2022, leaving creditors in a prolonged 18-month wait for financial recompense.
Celsius’s decision to unstake a substantial amount of ETH is seen as a necessary step to ensure liquidity for creditor compensation. The company’s official announcement, made via X (formerly Twitter), highlights the strategic nature of this move:
“In preparation of any asset distributions, Celsius has started the process of recalling and rebalancing assets to ensure ample liquidity. Celsius will unstake existing ETH holdings, which have provided valuable staking rewards income to the estate, to offset certain costs incurred throughout the restructuring process. The significant unstaking activity in the next few days will unlock ETH to ensure timely distributions to creditors,” the announcement reads.
Celsius Responsible For Over 86% Of ETH In Exit Queue?
Blockchain analytics firm Nansen states that Celsius possesses approximately one third of the total Ether in the unstaking exit queue, totaling around 206,300 ETH. This figure translates to a market value of around $465 million. To date, Celsius has already withdrawn over 40,249 ETH.
Tom Wan, an on-chain data analyst at 21.co (parent company of 21Shares), elaborated on the situation, “Over 540k staked ETH (16,670 Validators) are currently withdrawing from the Ethereum Beacon chain. To fully exit and withdraw now, it will require 14.5 days.” The researcher added that 352,000 ETH (54.7%) waiting to be withdrawn belongs to Figment and 206,000 ETH (32%) belongs to Celsius.
“It is also likely that the withdrawal by Figment belongs to Celsius. Earlier in June, when Celsius redeemed 428.000 stETH from Lido, they have re-staked 197.000 ETH via Figment,” he added. Therefore, Celsius might be responsible for unstaking 86.7% of all ETH in the queue.
Ethereum Price Crash Looming?
While some investors express concern that the release of such a large volume of tokens from staking could adversely impact Ethereum’s price, others maintain a more composed outlook, believing that the market is robust enough to absorb this additional volume.
Even in the unlikely event that all ETH from the queue is sold, liquidity appears to be strong enough to absorb such a process, which would be gradual rather than sudden. According to Coinmarketcap, the current ETH trading volume stands around $11.35 billion, suggesting that the market could withstand the potential sale of Celsius’ entire ETH holdings without any major ETH price crash. Fear-mongering is therefore superfluous.
After receiving approval for its settlement plan, Celsius has allowed eligible users to withdraw 72.5% of their cryptocurrency holdings, with this option available until February 28. A court document filed in the previous September revealed that approximately 58,300 users possess a total of $210 million in assets, which the court has classified as “custody assets.”
At press time, ETH traded at $2,250. The 1-week chart for ETH/USD indicates that, over the past five weeks, the price of Ethereum has formed a consolidation range. The chart defines this zone with a lower boundary at $2,125, indicated by the red area, and an upper boundary at the 0.382 Fibonacci retracement level, located at $2,441.
Featured image from Shutterstock, chart from TradingView.com
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