After a rather lengthy wait, the Bitcoin (BTC) price is finally back to the same price range it was in three years ago. Back in 2017, when the Bitcoin price peaked near $19,900, most altcoins also posted 200% or higher weekly gains.
Fast forward to the present time, and BTC’s $19,100 price is virtually identical to where it was on Dec. 17, 2017. One might think that not much has changed, despite some altcoins crashing, but that couldn’t be more distant from the truth.
A lot has changed in the cryptocurrency sector, and compared to 2017, a significant amount of necessary infrastructure has been built.
Today, there are tightly regulated derivatives offered through CME and CBOE futures contracts, and the rapid growth of institutional investors is providing an unending source of demand for Bitcoin.
A new host of multi-billion-dollar-market-cap decentralized finance platforms have also emerged. They support a new system of lending, synthetic swaps and interest-earning systems for a whole new set of investors.
Compared to 2017, there is a wealth of easily accessible data related to price and market capitalization ranking. This should help investors better understand how today’s market differed from the market in 2017.
We can better understand how the cryptocurrency market may look in a couple of years by analyzing the differences.
Regarding the ranking of cryptocurrencies by market capitalization, four of the top five remained the same. Oddly enough, Ether (ETH) and XRP’s market cap are relatively the same at $69 billion and $28 billion, respectively. This movement happened despite both cryptocurrencies seeing a 15% price drop since December 2017.
This effect is caused by the issuance of new coins. For example, Ether’s coin supply rose from 96.4 million to 113.7 million. The equivalent inflation amounted to 17.9% over three years. For comparison, the total number of Bitcoin in circulation increased by 10.8% in the same period.
Apart from Bitcoin, Ether, and XRP, the remaining cryptocurrencies in the top-20 took on heavy losses. IOTA lost 91%, Bitcoin Cash (BCH) 84%, Litecoin (LTC) 73%, and Cardano (ADA) saw a loss of 70%.