Everyone is well aware of how the cryptocurrency ecosystem has evolved this year alone. A lot of money has entered the world of Bitcoin and altcoins, although not all of the projects with higher market capitalizations are worth investing in these days. We have seen additional Bitcoin forks explode in value, whereas established altcoins are separating themselves from the useless clutter. It’s been an interesting year, and there are still five weeks left.
Cryptocurrency Market Cap All-time High
With so many different cryptocurrencies hitting all-time highs over the past few weeks, it was only a matter of time until new milestones were reached. The cryptocurrency market cap as a whole has also gone up quite spectacularly and now sits comfortably above the US$300 billion mark. That is quite a steep increase from earlier this year, to say the very least. On January 1, the total cryptocurrency market cap was just US$18 billion.
Although that seemed like quite a lot of money at the time, no one prepared us for what else the future would bring. More specifically, very few people expected this value to increase by over 1,600% before the year was over. Although a lot of currencies had been flying under the radar prior to 2017, the explosive growth of Bitcoin and prominent altcoins has really made its mark. Additionally, the vast number of ICOs out there is partially responsible for this surge.
Things started to move up nicely in June of this year when the total cryptocurrency market cap surpassed US$100 billion for the very first time. That was a major milestone at the time, and it took a while for the market cap to double from there. That only happened earlier this month when we hit US$200 billion. Four weeks later, the market cap has grown to US$304 billion and continues to climb as we speak. A lot of people are fearful of the impending correction, whenever it may happen.
Bitcoin is the cryptocurrency with the largest market capitalization right now. That is no big surprise, as it remains the world’s leading cryptocurrency first and foremost. Surprisingly, its market cap “only” increased by 1,100% over the past eleven months. That is remarkable growth, but some people expected a lot more from Bitcoin in this regard. Then again, we are on the cusp of surpassing US$10,000 per BTC, and a lot of altcoins have brought their A-games this year as well. Most of the latters’ values are still mainly speculative and do not necessarily represent the usefulness of a specific currency, mind you.
Perhaps the biggest surprise of the year is how we now have three different Bitcoin forks competing for the top spot. Bitcoin itself is still in the lead, but Bitcoin Cash has made a strong case for itself in recent weeks. There is also Bitcoin Gold to contend with right now, only making matters even more confusing. For the novice cryptocurrency enthusiast, none of this will make any sense whatsoever. It doesn’t make much sense to “veteran” users either; that much is evident. It will be interesting to see how this situation evolves in the years to come.
With the Bitcoin Dominance Index struggling to stay above 50%, it is evident that altcoins will continue to make inroads over the next few months. Ethereum, Litecoin, Dash, and Monero have all hit all-time highs this year. However, some of these currencies are still massively undervalued, whereas others are overvalued. How all of this will play out in the future remains to be seen. An interesting few weeks lie ahead, and we can’t wait to see what 2018 has in store for cryptocurrency.