If someone needs a harsh reminder of the precarious nature of the altcoin market, it could be worse than leafing through the historical cryptocurrency charts. Of particular note is the serious lack of presence on the part of the overwhelming majority of currencies that would have been considered important alternatives only five years ago.
Bitcoin, A Hardfork and The Coin previously known as Ripple
Looking at a historical snapshot of the first page of CoinMarketCap since December 2013, we can see that only the Bitcoins (BTC), Litecoin (LTC) and XRP (XRP) have survived for five years now.
In fact, from the total of the fifty coins listed in 2013, none is currently placed in the market segment of more than one hundred, except for the three previously mentioned. The nearest currency is Nxt (NXT) – a currency that ranked 16th in 2013, with a market capitalization of $ 5 million. Nxt now floats just off the top 100, ranked 106th with a market capitalization of $ 28 million – a not inconsiderable pickup.
Ranked 4th in 2013, with a market capitalization of $ 87 million, Peercoin (PPC) went on the other side, and now holds a value of $ 14 million. The famous Namecoin (NMC) shared a similar fate.
As you can see from the names of the highest cryptocurrencies in 2013, the current convention of giving cryptocurrencies to vague, enigmatic, and somewhat futuristic names had not yet begun. (TRON, Ethereum, Ontology, Qtum, I'm watching you).
Instead we have a succession of "coins" with various levels of importance and function suggested by their names: "Mondo", "Primo", "Peer". The trend is in countertendency only with Bitshares PTS (PTS) and Quark (QRK), while further down we find BitBar (BTB), Franko (FRK) and Argentum (ARG) – none of which is more than 900 ° today.
Bitcoin loses its dominant position
In 2013, the currencies were classified in 2nd, 3rd and 4th place to produce a market capitalization of one tenth compared to that of Bitcoin, which in December 2013 was worth $ 10 billion. Litecoin, XRP and Peercoin totaled just over $ 1 billion at the same time.
The dominance of Bitcoin was 88.9% five years ago, while 6% of Litecoin's market share was higher than the "Others" which constituted the entire remainder of the altcoin market.
This contrasts with today's status quo that sees Bitcoin worth $ 60 billion, and the next three values worth $ 24 billion combined – a significant increase from one-tenth, to two-fifths of the value of Bitcoin.
Taking those numbers as a cross section of the market, we see that the altcoins have exploded, and grown up in front of Bitcoin in the last five years – but for how long? As the example of Nxt (NXT) shows, even though the altcoin market has been diluted and invaded in recent years, in 2017 there is still enough new money left to continue to keep some old coins afloat.
But with the current 95% -99% decline, and the ICO's declining trend, one wonders how long the cryptocurrency investors will keep faith in something that has been so fleeting and transitory in the recent past. .
Disclaimer: The author owns bitcoin, Ethereum and other cryptocurrencies. It holds investment positions in the currencies, but does not carry out trading activities in the short term or daily.
Featured image courtesy of Shutterstock.