Ether firms following U.S. Fed, hits record high; bitcoin trails.

Ether, the world's second-largest cryptocurrency, surpassed its previous high on Wednesday, catching up to bitcoin's gain and riding on rumours of more blockchain adoption.

As of 3:15 p.m. EDT, the ether token, which underpins the ethereum blockchain network, had risen to $4,670.81.

After the US Federal Reserve announced a tapering of its asset purchases, the cryptocurrency continued its gains, breaching the previous day's $4,600 milestone, but maintained its opinion that rising inflation would be "transitory" and unlikely to necessitate a rapid rise in interest rates.

This week, the price of Ether has increased by more than 10%.

Other tokens on the base layer of blockchain networks, known as Layer 1 networks, have gained traction in the days after bitcoin, the world's largest cryptocurrency, hit a record high of $67,016.5 on Oct. 20.

"The correlation of crypto versus equities and risk-on sentiments is tremendous," said Danny Chong, CEO of Tranchess, a decentralised asset tracking platform.

"With the lack of negative news, everyone is expecting a bull run," Chong said. "Ask what can bring it down to determine the depth of the change."

Bitcoin (BTC) was trading at $63,262, up 117 percent this year, while Ethereum (ETH) had increased sixfold.

"Ethereum's strength has been rising in lockstep with BTC and other majors since the market reversal at the end of September," said Ryan Rabaglia, managing director and global head of trading at digital asset platform OSL.

"For what we anticipate will be a significant shift in a potentially extended market mood uplift, Ethereum has been the obvious winner of the Layer-1s. Ethereum will also continue to play a key role in the development of the NFT and metaverse ecosystems "he stated

Since October, several blockchain tokens, including bitcoin and ether, have risen due to a steady stream of news on cryptocurrency adoption by banks, the growth of nonfungible tokens on virtual gaming platforms, the launch of bitcoin futures-based U.S. ETFs, and a need among investors for diversification in an uncertain interest rate environment.

After Facebook Inc. (FB.O) relaunched as Meta to focus on establishing the "metaverse," a shared virtual environment, smaller currencies have gained interest as well. find out more

The Commonwealth Bank of Australia, Australia's largest bank, announced on Wednesday that it will be the country's first to offer crypto services to retail customers.

In October, digital investment products' assets under management (AUM) hit a new high of $74.7 billion, up 45.5 percent, according to digital assets researcher CryptoCompare. The total AUM for bitcoin-based products surged by 52.2 percent to $55.2 billion, while the AUM for ethereum-based funds increased by 30% to $15.9 billion, both of which are new highs.