The second-largest digital asset doesn’t look to be stopping its meteoric rise anytime soon.

Ether (cryptoprimacy.com/ethereum-price-index” data-amp=”https://cointelegraph-com.cdn.ampproject.org/c/s/cryptoprimacy.com/ethereum-price-index”>ETH) eclipsed $4,000 for the first time on Monday, passing the psychologically significant barrier on multiple exchanges, including Coinbase. The new milestone comes cryptoprimacy.com/news/ethereum-co-founder-vitalik-buterin-becomes-billionaire-as-ether-hits-3k” data-amp=”https://cointelegraph-com.cdn.ampproject.org/c/s/cryptoprimacy.com/news/ethereum-co-founder-vitalik-buterin-becomes-billionaire-as-ether-hits-3k/amp”>just a week after breaking $3,000cryptoprimacy.com/news/ethereum-co-founder-vitalik-buterin-becomes-billionaire-as-ether-hits-3k” data-amp=”https://cointelegraph-com.cdn.ampproject.org/c/s/cryptoprimacy.com/news/ethereum-co-founder-vitalik-buterin-becomes-billionaire-as-ether-hits-3k/amp”>.

ETH/USD 4-hour candle chart (Coinbase). Source: TradingView

Last week, cryptoprimacy.com/news/ethereum-hits-3-000-for-the-first-time-now-larger-than-bank-of-america” data-amp=”https://cointelegraph-com.cdn.ampproject.org/c/s/cryptoprimacy.com/news/ethereum-hits-3-000-for-the-first-time-now-larger-than-bank-of-america/amp”>ETH overtook Bank of America stock as the 28th-largest asset in the world. But at $454.49 billion as of today, ETH has now eclipsed the market capitalization of consumer-staples giants Wal-Mart and Johnson and Johnson, and it is knocking at the door of JPMorgan Chase — the largest United States bank by assets under management.

Part of the rise may be linked to increasing institutional interest in the asset. Last week, a CoinShares report said that cryptoprimacy.com/news/institutional-managers-hold-a-record-13-9b-worth-of-ethereum” data-amp=”https://cointelegraph-com.cdn.ampproject.org/c/s/cryptoprimacy.com/news/institutional-managers-hold-a-record-13-9b-worth-of-ethereum/amp”>institutions bought over $30 million in ETH at the end of April. Money managers are thought to now own $13.9 billion in ETH or ETH vehicles.

Likewise, there have been significant strides in adoption. On April 28, the European Investment Bank announced that cryptoprimacy.com/news/ethereum-on-a-high-after-european-investment-bank-s-121m-digital-bond-news” data-amp=”https://cointelegraph-com.cdn.ampproject.org/c/s/cryptoprimacy.com/news/ethereum-on-a-high-after-european-investment-bank-s-121m-digital-bond-news/amp”>it would be issuing a $120 million bond on Ethereum, the world’s largest layer-one blockchain, in collaboration with major banking entities such as Goldman Sachs. Additionally, cryptoprimacy.com/news/alt-season-rush-ethereum-and-defi-get-in-shape-for-another-hot-summer” data-amp=”https://cointelegraph-com.cdn.ampproject.org/c/s/cryptoprimacy.com/news/alt-season-rush-ethereum-and-defi-get-in-shape-for-another-hot-summer/amp”>the growth of decentralized finance — one of Ethereum’s key communities and use cases — continues at a remarkable pace.

However, the most bullish catalysts on the horizon are a pair of major infrastructure upgrades to the network: EIP-1559 and Ethereum 2.0. EIP-1559, now scheduled to be cryptoprimacy.com/news/a-london-tour-guide-what-the-eip-1559-hard-fork-promises-for-ethereum” data-amp=”https://cointelegraph-com.cdn.ampproject.org/c/s/cryptoprimacy.com/news/a-london-tour-guide-what-the-eip-1559-hard-fork-promises-for-ethereum/amp”>included in the “London” hard fork, will include an overhaul of the Ethereum fee structure and is expected to decrease gas costs significantly while also potentially making ETH a more deflationary asset.

Eth2, in turn, will transition the network to a proof-of-stake consensus model, which is expected to decrease sell pressure and encourage holding the asset.

The remarkable run has even prompted cryptoprimacy.com/news/deflationary-eth2-could-flip-bitcoin-messari-analyst” data-amp=”https://cointelegraph-com.cdn.ampproject.org/c/s/cryptoprimacy.com/news/deflationary-eth2-could-flip-bitcoin-messari-analyst/amp”>renewed speculation that there could be a “flippening” on the horizon — a long-anticipated event among the Ethereum community in which ETH overtakes Bitcoin (cryptoprimacy.com/bitcoin-price-index” data-amp=”https://cointelegraph-com.cdn.ampproject.org/c/s/cryptoprimacy.com/bitcoin-price-index”>BTC) in market capitalization.