A Brand New Market Cap
Wow! Look at it go! I’m talking, of course, about crypto’s ever-expanding market cap, touching US$800 billion as I write these words. Yes, that’s very close to a trillion bucks. And it’s still growing. At the start of the year (just over 5 days ago), we sat around US$670 billion, when seemingly out of nowhere, we all started watching the Ethereum (ETH) funds in our digital wallets expand in fiat value.
A World of Smart Contracts
As its market capitalization skyrockets – first to US$750, then to US$1,000 – Ethereum may not be finished yet. But ETH isn’t the only game in town. Altcoins utilizing the Ethereum blockchain, incorporating smart contracts into their peer-to-peer platforms, are also benefiting greatly from the influx of cash into our favorite exchanges. As an example, Ethlend (LEND), a little-known lending platform based on ETH and ERC20 tokens, has more than doubled in price with the new growth. The price of Tron (TRX), a planned digital media platform that will transfer user information across games, social media sites and even casinos, shot up from 5 cents to over 20 (quadrupling once again) in the initial stages of this new cash influx (yeah, I know, it’s fallen a bit since).
But these aren’t the only examples. Go ahead and look at your own wallet(s) if you haven’t in the last week or so. You might be surprised at what you find. It seems it’s an Ethereum-based world we live in now, and this doesn’t look to be the regular pump-and-dump kind of action we came to expect from the half trillion-dollar market of yesteryear.
Predictability in the Market
Better still, the rise of all of our favorite altcoins (I’m thinking outside of the mainstream coins on Coinbase here) is happening on a somewhat predictable schedule associated with the slight dips we see in the price of Ethereum. In this new crypto-universe, it seems money no longer holds fast to Bitcoin’s (BTC) gravitational pull. Instead, after transferring Ethereum over to the exchanges, it is traded out to some degree for these smaller, lesser known coins.
And why not? How many quadruplings, how many 1,000% gains, have to occur before we all realize where the real money is in the crypto space?
Bitcoin (BTC) is Still King
With great reward comes great risk, however. And as we dip our toes into the expanding options offered on these burgeoning exchanges (I’m looking at you, Binance), we should both fear and respect the influence of the king, Bitcoin. After all, with this much money in the market, there should be no doubt any longer that Bitcoin has survived the shock of winter and is coming right back to secure its place at the top of the heap (not that it ever lost its position).
And when BTC rises, the influence of Ethereum is again lost (if only temporarily). And with Lite-speed (we see you, Litecoin), our gains from the day seemingly vanish as the masses clamor to secure their wealth in this awesome powerhouse of value. With that said, you’d better believe that Bitcoin is still very much king around here. It’s just not the only player in town anymore.
So whether you are an Ethereum or a Bitcoin believer, chances are that you will do well this year, as there just may be room for both with this brand new market cap. For Ethereum, the utility of the product and its derivatives are undeniable. The smart contract and its effects on all of our lives will no doubt be solidified and documented throughout the year(s). And as for Bitcoin, the ultimate storage for our coveted satoshi, we should probably all still pay homage when we’ve reached a comfortable level of gains in the alternative currency market (if we wish to keep them).