Total inflows so far this year were $5.45 billion.

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Bitcoin and ethereum, the two largest cryptocurrencies in terms of market capitalization, posted strong inflows last week that saw investments in the sector hit $489 million, the largest since February, CoinShares weekly data showed on Tuesday.

Bitcoin received the lion’s share of investor inflows last week of $441.7 million, with $4.2 billion so far this year. The world’s largest digital currency posted record weekly outflows the previous week.

Ethereum posted inflows of $30.2 million last week and an all-time peak of $13.9 billion in 2021, data showed.

Total inflows so far this year were $5.45 billion.

On Tuesday, ethereum hit yet another record high of $3,530, pushing its market cap at $393 billion. But it was last down 2.4% at $3,353.

"The biggest reason for the surge (in ethereum) appears to be the growing number of developers building DeFi applications on the platform, but also the growing institutional interest," said Petr Kozyakov, co-founder and chief executive officer at global payment network Mercuryo.

DeFi are crypto platforms that facilitate lending outside of traditional banking institutions.

Other cryptocurrencies such as Polkadot, Binance and Cardano saw minor inflows.