This article analyses the top 10 cryptocurrencies by market capitalisation. Beginning with the largest, the top 10 are currently Bitcoin, Ethereum, Ripple, Bitcoin Cash, EOS, Stellar Lumens, Litecoin, Tether, Bitcoin SV, and TRON. The total value of the top 10 cryptocurrencies (as of January 2nd 2019, 11:30) is $112.07bn. This is an increase of $0.74bn since December 3rd.
How many cryptocurrencies are there?
There are approximately 2,535 cryptocurrencies being traded with a total market capitalisation of $133.07bn. So, the top 10 cryptocurrencies represent 84% of the total market value. There were 2,510 cryptocurrencies as of December 3rd.
The top cryptocurrencies list shows relative positions rather than changes in market capitalisation. So, when we say “Bitcoin $x billion – no change”, we are saying the Bitcoin relative ranking in the number one spot is unchanged, irrespective of changes to its market capitalisation.
Top 10 cryptocurrencies and their market capitalisation
- Bitcoin (BTC) $67.13bn – no change
- Ethereum (ETH) $15.64bn – up 1 from 3
- Ripple (XRP) $14.96bn – down 1 from 2
- Bitcoin Cash (BCH) $2.90bn – up 1 from 5
- EOS (EOS) $2.47bn – up 1 from 6
- Stellar Lumens (XLM) $2.20bn – down 2 from 4
- Litecoin (LTC) $1.95bn – no change
- Tether (USDT) $1.88bn – no change
- Bitcoin SV (BSV) $1.63bn – no change
- TRON (TRX) $1.31bn – new entry
Top 10 cryptocurrencies commentary
TRON reenters the top 10 at the expense of Cardano. This month’s big story is Ethereum regaining the number two spot from Ripple. It was a big story when Ripple became the second largest cryptocurrency by market capitalisation during November:
Ethereum’s rally is due to the anticipation of a series of upcoming hard forks. Ethereum Classic Vision will be airdropped to Ethereum holders at a ratio of 3:1 on January 11th. The Ethereum Nowa fork, meanwhile, is planned on January 12th:
There has been some minor movement up and down for the remaining top 10.
Top 10 cryptocurrencies further reading
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As a starting point, here are a few facts about the top 10 cryptocurrencies and some latest news for each one…
In August 2008, the domain name bitcoin.org was registered. On October 31st 2008, a paper was published called “Bitcoin: A Peer-to-Peer Electronic Cash System”. This was authored by Satoshi Nakamoto, the inventor of Bitcoin. To date, no one knows who this person, or people, are.
The paper outlined a method of using a peer-to-peer network for electronic transactions without “relying on trust”. On January 3rd 2009, the Bitcoin network came into existence. Nakamoto mined block number “0” (or the “genesis block”), which had a reward of 50 Bitcoins.
Bitcoin (BTC) price analysis over 2018:
2018 was a torrid year for cryptocurrencies. The price of Bitcoin (BTC) dropped an astonishing 73% since it opened at $13,850.50 on January 1st, 2018. It closed on December 31st, 2018 at $3,709.50.
Ethereum was launched by Vitalik Buterin on July 30th 2015. He was a researcher and programmer working on Bitcoin Magazine, and he initially wrote a white paper in 2013 describing Ethereum. Buterin had proposed that Bitcoin needed a scripting language. He decided to develop a new platform with a more general scripting language when he couldn’t get buy-in to his proposal.
The development was funded by an online crowdsale between July and August 2014. The system went live with 11.9 million coins already mined for the crowd sale (about 13% of the total supply in circulation). Following the collapse of The DAO project in 2016, Ethereum was split into two blockchains. The new version became Ethereum and the original blockchain continues as Ethereum Classic.
Ethereum (ETH) price analysis over 2018
The price of Ethereum (ETH) dropped 82% since it opened at $736.77 on January 1st, 2018. It closed on December 31st, 2018 at $131.90.
Ripple is a real-time gross settlement system (RTGS) developed by the Ripple company. It is also referred to as the Ripple Transaction Protocol (RTXP) or Ripple protocol. It can trace its roots to 2004 when a web developer called Ryan Fugger had the idea to create a monetary system that was decentralised and could effectively allow individuals to create their own money.
RipplePay.com was launched in 2005 to provide a secure payment system for members of an online community via a global network. Jed McCaleb began developing a digital currency system in 2011 in which transactions were verified by consensus among members of the network, rather than by the mining process used by Bitcoin which relies on blockchain ledgers. This new version of the Ripple system was designed to eliminate Bitcoin’s centralised exchanges, use less electricity than Bitcoin, and perform transactions much more quickly.
Ripple was launched in 2012 to facilitate secure, instant global transactions supporting tokens representing fiat currency, cryptocurrency or any unit of value.
Bitcoin Cash was born out of the idea of making Bitcoin more practical for small, day-to-day payments. In May 2017, Bitcoin payments took about four days unless a fee was paid, which was proportionately too large for small transactions. A change to the code was implemented and Bitcoin Cash was born on 1st August 2017.
Bitcoin Cash (BCH) price analysis over 2018
The price of BCH dropped 94% since it opened at $2,359.30 on January 1st, 2018. It closed on December 31st, 2018 at $148.66.
Bitcoin Cash news:
The EOS.IO platform was developed by private company block.one and released as open-source software on June 2nd 2018. One billion tokens were distributed on the Ethereum blockchain by block.one. EOS is based on a white paper published in 2017.
Stellar was founded in 2014 by Jed McCaleb and Joyce Kim. At launch it was based on the Ripple protocol but the network eventually forked. Stellar is an open source protocol for exchanging money where servers use the internet to connect to and communicate with other Stellar servers, forming a global value exchange network.
Stellar Lumens news:
Litecoin was released in October 2011 by Charlie Lee, a former Google employee. It was a fork of Bitcoin with the main difference being a smaller block generation time, increased maximum number of coins and a different script-based algorithm.
Tether was issued on the Bitcoin blockchain. In their own words “Tether converts cash into digital currency, to anchor or ‘tether’ the value of the coin to the price of national currencies”. So, the value is meant to mirror that of the US dollar and each unit of Tether is backed by $1 held in reserve.
One of the main uses of Tether is to facilitate trading between cryptocurrencies with a rate fixed to the US$ allowing traders to take advantage of trading opportunities.
Bitcoin SV came into existence following the Bitcoin Cash chain split on November the 15th 2018. The chain split was caused at two competing software implementation for the Bitcoin Cash blockchain (Bitcoin ABC and Bitcoin SV) broke away from consensus, and was subsequently supported by two different groups of miners. After the time of the fork, users could claim tokens on each side of the fork if they had previously held tokens on the old Bitcoin Cash chain.
Bitcoin Cash ABC is now being recognised by most exchanges as Bitcoin Cash (the name of the original pre fork currency) with a separate listing for Bitcoin Cash SV.
Bitcoin SV news
The TRON Protocol is pitched as “one of the largest blockchain-based operating systems in the world, offering scalable, high availability and high throughput support that underlies all the decentralised applications in the TRON ecosystem”.
An ICO campaign took place in September 2017 and raised US$70 million. The coin is called the TRONix (TRX).
Market capitalisation values from investing.com website 21st November 2018, 10:17
Further commentary & notes:
Top 10 cryptocurrencies December 3rd update
- Bitcoin (BTC) $70.02bn – no change
- Ripple (XRP) $14.61bn – up 1 from 3
- Ethereum (ETH) $11.77bn – down 1 from 2
- Stellar Lumens (XLM) $2.99bn – up 2 from 6
- Bitcoin Cash (BCH) $2.91bn – down 1 from 4
- EOS (EOS) $2.56bn – down 1 from 5
- Litecoin (LTC) $1.91bn – no change
- Tether (USDT) $1.84bn – up 2 from 10
- Bitcoin SV (BSV) $1.66bn – new entrant
- Cardano (ADA) $1.06bn – down 2 from 8
This month has seen a dramatic fall in values, and there has been a lot of movement in the top 10. Bitcoin SV appears as a new currency and is a new entrant following the Bitcoin Cash fork. Ripple makes it into the number two slot at the expense of Ethereum as the flippening happens. The price crash of the last month has led to changes in the rest of the top 10 with various currencies moving position.
Top 10 cryptocurrencies November 21st update
- Bitcoin (BTC) $81.19bn – no change
- Ripple (XRP) $18.24bn – up 1 from 3
- Ethereum (ETH) $14.27bn – down 1 from 2
- Stellar Lumens (XLM) $3.97bn – up 2 from 6
- EOS (EOS) $5.12bn – no change
- Litecoin (LTC) $2.04bn – up 1 from 7
- Tether (USDT) $1.78bn – up 3 from 10
- Cardano (ADA) $1.24bn – no change
- Monero (XMR) $1.16bn – no change
- TRON (TRX) $0.98bn – new entry
These last two weeks have seen the biggest change in the Top 10 this year. Bitcoin Cash drops out following the Bitcoin Cash fork. Ripple makes it into the number two slot at the expense of Ethereum as the flippening happens. Prices have crashed over the last two weeks. This has led to dramatic changes in the rest of the Top 10 with Tether gaining the most places. TRON makes it back into the Top 10. It has been in the Top 10 this year and is always close but the removal of BCH makes room for it to take the last spot in the Top 10. There is frequent movement in the top 10 as values fluctuate, so expect older currencies to drop out and re-enter the list regularly.
Top 10 cryptocurrencies November 7th update
- Bitcoin (BTC) $113.47bn – no change
- Ethereum (ETH) $22.41bn – no change
- Ripple (XRP) $21.43bn – no change
- Bitcoin Cash (BCH) $10.72bn – no change
- EOS (EOS) $5.12bn – no change
- Stellar Lumens (XLM) $4.9bn – no change
- Litecoin (LTC) $3.20bn – no change
- Cardano (ADA) $2.05bn – up 1 from 9
- Monero (XMR) $1.83bn – up 1 from 10
- Tether (USDT) $1.77bn – down 2 from 8
This month sees all the cryptocurrencies remaining fairly stable in terms of market capitalisation. The only currency that has changed significantly is Tether which sees its market cap fall by $1.04bn. This has dropped it from eight to ten in the rankings allowing Cardano and Monero to move up one place each.
Top 10 cryptocurrencies October update
- Bitcoin (BTC) $114.50bn – no change
- Ethereum (ETH) $23.61bn – no change
- Ripple (XRP) $23.44bn – no change
- Bitcoin Cash (BCH) $9.30bn – no change
- EOS (EOS) $5.13bn – no change
- Stellar Lumens (XLM) $4.91bn – no change
- Litecoin (LTC) $3.56bn – no change
- Tether (USDT) $2.81bn – no change
- Cardano (ADA) $2.20bn – no change
- Monero (XMR) $1.89bn – no change
This month sees all the cryptocurrencies remaining in the same position in the Top 10. Whilst there is no change in rankings to report, its interesting to note that Ripple actually gained approximately $10bn during the month. Every other currency (except Tether) lost value.
Top 10 cryptocurrencies September update
- Bitcoin (BTC) $125.62bn – no change
- Ethereum (ETH) $29.43bn – no change
- Ripple (XRP) $13.41bn – no change
- Bitcoin Cash (BCH) $10.87bn – no change
- EOS (EOS) $5.80bn – no change
- Stellar Lumens (XLM) $4.17bn – no change
- Litecoin (LTC) $3.78bn – no change
- Tether (USDT) $2.80bn – up from 10
- Cardano (ADA) $2.69bn – no change
- Monero (XMR) $2.22bn – new entry
The total value of the top 10 cryptocurrencies (as of 3rd September 2018) is $200.79bn. This is a drop of $27bn compared to the previous month (August). This is a dramatic fall of $80bn since June where the total value stood at the $281bn mark.
This month sees Monero as a new entrant to the Top 10. Tether moves up to number eight whilst IOTA drops out of the Top 10 altogether. All the other cryptocurrencies are in the same spot as last month.
Top 10 cryptocurrencies August update
- Bitcoin (BTC) $130.13bn – no change
- Ethereum (ETH) $42.44bn – no change
- Ripple (XRP) $17.54bn – no change
- Bitcoin Cash (BCH) $13.08bn – no change
- EOS (EOS) $6.58bn – no change
- Stellar Lumens (XLM) $5.14bn – up from 8
- Litecoin (LTC) $5.14bn – down from 6
- Cardano (ADA) $3.63bn – down from 7
- IOTA (MIOTA) $2.56bn – no change
- Tether (USDT) $2.40bn – no change
The Top 10 remained the same as July’s. Litecoin dropped from the number six spot to number seven; Stellar Lumens rose from the number eight spot to number six and Cardano dropped one place to number eight.
The market capitalisation of the Top 10 cryptocurrencies grew by $4.34bn in a month (August 2018 vs July 2018).
There were 2,041 cryptocurrencies with a total market capitalisation of $253bn.
Top 10 cryptocurrencies July update
TRON dropped out of the top 10 into the number 11 spot. It was replaced by Tether.
The market capitalisation of the Top 10 cryptocurrencies fell by $57 billion in a month (July 2018 analysis compared to the June 2018 analysis).
There were 1,894 cryptocurrencies with a total market capitalisation of US$275 bn.