The cryptocurrency market surged by $6 billion on Tuesday, propelling litecoin to a new yearly high and launching bitcoin one step closer to a major hurdle it needs to cross before it can slay its historic bear market.
As of the time of writing, the cryptocurrency market had a total valuation of $132.3 billion. Daily volume stood at more than $33 billion, a full $5 billion above where it was at this time on Monday.
In what seems to be a developing trend, the bitcoin price did not lead the charge. Instead, two altcoins – first binance coin and later litecoin – catalyzed the rally.
Binance coin, the utility token from the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchange, rose a staggering 17.84 percent to $13.40. Its $1.9 billion market cap places it just $150 million behind stablecoin giant tether on the market cap charts.
Hours later, the litecoin price began to surge, rising more than 10 percent in a matter of minutes. For the day, the coin is up 13.86 percent to a present global average $52.93. At its peak, litecoin reached $54.68, marking a new 2019 high.
Bitcoin did see gains, of course, rising a solid 3.29 percent to clear the $3,830 level on Bitstamp and Coinbase. Its global average stood at $3,872, a full $168 above its previous-day low according to Yahoo/CryptoCompare.
However, its lagging performance relative to other large-cap assets caused it to lose market share. “Bitcoin Dominance” stands at 51.7 percent, down from 52.4 percent on March 4.
It’s not clear what triggered today’s upward grind.
Analysts searched for fundamental indicators, pointing to litecoin’s move toward increased privacy, as well as a high-profile partnership to allow KPOP fans to pay for concert tickets using LTC. However, both of those factors stem back into February and January, making it unlikely that either of them would spark such a dramatic rally nearly a week into March.
There’s also the report that Starbucks will accept bitcoin, but that news is not as cut-and-dried as it initially appeared, nor would it explain why bitcoin failed to lead the advance.
More likely is that traders want to retest upside targets following Sunday’s sell-off and subsequent consolidation. Bitcoin, for instance, traded as low as $3,670 on March and had shed $520 after it failed to clear resistance at $4,200 on Feb. 23. It still has considerable breathing room before it would need grapple with that technical wall again, even after today’s rally.
On the off chance that it does manage to get there within the short-term, the flagship cryptocurrency would still have a long way to escape its longest-ever bear market. How far? According to analysts at crypto broker BitOoda, bitcoin must eclipse the $6,000 mark before the market officially turns bullish.