There are 2,503 recognised cryptocurrencies as of November 21st, 2018. That sounds like a lot. When we look more closely however, we can see that the market is exceptionally top heavy. This means that there is a small number of cryptocurrencies forming the majority of the market.
How many cryptocurrencies form the majority of the market?
Listing cryptocurrencies by market capitalisation reveals that just 25 of the 2,503 cryptocurrencies make up 90% of the total market capitalisation. What’s even more incredible is that there is one cryptocurrency, Bitcoin (BTC), that makes up 59% of the total market capitalisation of those 25 currencies.
Top 25 cryptocurrencies
Here is a list of the top 25 cyrptocurrencies listed in order of size, starting with the biggest:
Stellar Lumens (XLM)
Binance Coin (BNB)
Ethereum Classic (ETC)
Bitcoin Gold (BTG)
How many cryptocurrencies form the minority of the market?
There are 2,478 cryptocurrencies outside of the top 25, and these currencies make up 10% of the total value of the market. Once you look outside the big players, you’ll see there are some really small cryptocurrencies around. This doesn’t necessarily mean they will always be small, but there is a lot of churn at the peripheries of the market with currencies coming and going quickly.
If we look at market capitalisation, we can say the following:
- There are 824 cryptocurrencies with a market capitalisation of less than $20m
- There are 526 cryptocurrencies with a market capitalisation of zero
- There were 141 cryptocurrencies where there was no buying or selling of the currency over a 24 hour period (Nov 21, 2018)
The number of available cryptocurrencies is large, but a very small number dominate the market. There are lots of small currencies not being traded or with a small market capitalisation, and the number of cryptocurrencies changes quickly – reflecting the crypto market, which is volatile with wild swings in values.
In the longer term, some of the smaller cryptocurrencies will grow, and being small isn’t necessarily a bad thing. There are numerous examples of some interesting projects, but not all of them will work or get enough support for long-term survival.
Not every cryptocurrency is going to change the world.