The cryptocurrency ecosystem is on a roll, as its total market capitalization has surpassed the $50 billion mark. Cyrptocurrency’s market cap hit $53.726 billion today, according to coinmarketcap.com. Most altcoins bounced back after a recent surge ended yesterday, when all but a handful of altcoins with $100 million and more in capitalization suffered losses.
Bitcoin has led the charge, posting steady gains daily and having recently surpassed the $1,800 price point. Bitcoin’s price gained 4.82% points in the recent 24-hour period to $1,848.11, and has surpassed $30 billion in capitalization at $30.168 billion.
Ethereum and Ripple, the second and third players respectively, bounced back from the prior 24-hour period’s losses and posted respective gains of 2.96% and 4.15%.
Litecoin, number four with a $1.62 billion market cap, lost 6.73% in the 24-hour period after being the only cryptocurrency besides bitcoin to post a gain in the prior period. Litecoin was the only cryptocurrency over the $1 billion mark that lost capitalization in the prior period.
NEM, number five with just over $1 billion and the only other cryptocurrency that is over the $1 billion mark, gained 3.98 points.
Dash, number six with just over $683 million, gained 1.02%. Dash suffered a 5.09 point drop in the prior period after soaring from $77 million to $528 million in the first quarter.
Ethereum Classic, number seven at just under $600 million, grabbed just under 2 points.
Monero, number nine at $427.899 million, added 1.42% after losing 1.51% in the prior period.
Ninth-place Stellar Lumens was the only cryptocurrency with more than $100 million in capitalization besides Litecoin to lose in the 24-hour period, falling 1.58 points to $282.821 million.
The next cryptocurrency to lose was Steem, number 12, shedding 3.53 points after posting a 34.87-point gain in the previous 24-hour period and the only cryptocurrency besides bitcoin and Litecoin to post a gain in that altcoin-unfriendly period. Steemit is a decentralized social media platform that rewards users for delivering commentary, images and videos. Its blockchain successfully completed a hard fork late last year.
Dogecoin, at number 14 with $185.549 million, was the only other cryptocurrency with more than $100 million to lose, dropping 2.51 points. Among cryptocurrencies with $100 million or more in capitalization, only four suffered price losses in the 24-hour period.
Also read: Altcoins reap bitcoin’s recent gains
The altcoins’ recovery following yesterday’s losses bodes well for bitcoin, as the demand for altcoins feeds bitcoin purchasing. Most exchanges don’t allow investors to trade fiat currencies for altcoins. Those who want to invest have to first purchase bitcoins, then exchange them for the desired altcoin.
Altcoin purchasing has not been the sole factor behind bitcoin’s gains, however.
A jump in global trading volume, particularly from Japan and the Japan-based bitFlyer exchange is driving the surge. Japanese markets lead the charge as the yen contributed to over half of the global trading volume in a recent 24-hour period.
Capital flows into bitcoin are also increasing worldwide.
Brian Kelly, the founder of Brian Kelly Capital, recently launched a digital assets fund for outside investors and has noted that the biggest driver is institutional investors in the digital asset sector.
Another factor Kelly noted is a consensus in the bitcoin community against Bitcoin Unlimited, which would divide the cryptocurrency into two coins. The momentum now is to support and upgrade the existing Bitcoin Core system.
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