A third of the world’s ether (ETH) is owned by just 376 people, according to Chainalysis researchpublished on May 15.
Despite controlling a large portion of ETH’s circulating supply, the study found these “whales” are responsible for just 7% of all transaction activity.
Chainalysis concluded that while these individuals don’t necessarily have a meaningful impact on ETH’s price, they do contribute to market volatility when big sell-offs are made.
These figures could be seen as an improvement compared with 2016, when whales owned 47% of ETH’s circulating supply.
According to the team’s report, about 60% of whales hold their assets and do not regularly trade with exchanges.
Analysis of activity from 2016 to 2019 also revealed that ether prices tend to follow movements in bitcoin (BTC.) Researchers added:
“On average, a 1% increase in bitcoin prices yesterday leads to a 1.1% increase in ether prices today.”
Overall, the blockchain analytics company believes that concerns about the impact of whales on market prices may have been overstated, but added:
“We cannot rule out the possibility that whales can impact price changes within single days based on outlier events.”
Last month, the company’s research revealed that at least 95% of crypto crimes investigated by law enforcement involve BTC.
Chainalysis also recently expanded its real-time transaction monitoring tools to cover 10 cryptocurrencies in response to demand from law enforcement agencies.