Bitcoin is no doubt a high-value cryptocurrency. But after it was released, several altcoins joined the race, much to the euphoria of investors. This generated new interest and curiosity in cryptocurrencies, including Ethereum, Ripple, Litecoin, and more.
The intense competition among these altcoins always leads to one of them being on top for a few days, be it in terms of price, market cap, or other factors.
The latest news is that Ripple has topped all the charts among altcoins. Clearly, it is nowhere near Bitcoin if we only compare value and market cap. Ripple is slightly different from other cryptocurrencies in terms of technology and the way it works. But there seems to be plenty of positive news for Ripple users.
Ripple, along with other cryptocurrencies, gained popularity in South Korea and is surging in Japan as well. But now, according to recent news, Bitcoin seems to have caught the fancy of North Korean hackers and fraudsters. With all this, security and regulation become key factors in determining the growth of digital currencies.
Ripple’s price, which mostly ranged between $0.20 and $1.10 over the last two to three months, surged to over $2.00 as of January 2, 2018.
But this piece of news is related to the market cap rise. This means that Ripple topped the competition in terms of market cap, not price. Ripple’s market cap at the time of writing was near $90.4 billion. Ethereum’s market cap was around $85.4 billion.
If we compare Ripple’s market cap at the beginning of December, it was $9.67 billion. So it has increased astronomically, by almost $81.0 billion. In terms of percentage, the rise is by almost 835%. (Source: “Historical Data,” CoinMarketCap, January 2, 2018.)
So, what is market cap and how does it influence the rise and fall of a digital currency? In terms of stocks, it is the value of outstanding shares of a publicly traded company at a given point in time. The same concept applies to digital currencies, although there are no physical shares in the latter. Market cap value definitely gives an idea about public opinion and plays a role in increasing or decreasing a cryptocurrency’s valuation.
If you try to analyze some reasons behind these rising market cap values, you would know that the decline in the Bitcoin value and the controversies associated with it may be one of the major factors. Which one of the top virtual currencies spears ahead on some days is really not important here. Today, it is Ripple. Tomorrow, it could be Ethereum or some other virtual currency.
The fact is that all these cryptocurrencies competing with each other have the ability to surpass the Bitcoin value in the coming years.
So, as far as the current state of the cryptocurrency market is concerned, Bitcoin is still declining in value, while most of these altcoins have peaked. Some stats show that Ripple topped the charts in terms of performance in 2017. (Source: “Here are the top 10 cryptoassets of 2017 (and bitcoin’s 1,000% rise doesn’t even make the list),” Quartz, January 2, 2018.)