There are dozens of different cryptocurrencies, ranging from Bitcoin and Ethereum to Dogecoin and Tether, which might be confusing when you’re just starting in cryptocurrency. These are the top five cryptocurrencies in terms of market capitalization, or the total value of all coins presently in circulation, to help you start.
Because of the rule of supply and demand, market capitalization statistics are constantly changing. The values in the list below are for March 22, 2022, thus approximations.
Following each cryptocurrency, such as BTC, the acronym refers to its ticker symbol, which serves as a form of identification for trading reasons.
1. Bitcoin (BTC)—Market capitalization—$880 billion
Bitcoin (BTC) was the first cryptocurrency, developed in 2009 under the pseudonym Satoshi Nakamoto. BTC, like other cryptocurrencies, is based on a blockchain, which is a ledger that records transactions over a network of thousands of computers.
Because modifications to distributed ledgers must validate by solving a cryptographic puzzle, a process known as proof of work, Bitcoin thus kept secure and protected from fraudsters.
As Bitcoin has become a household brand, its price has risen. In May 2016, a Bitcoin could purchase for about $500. A single Bitcoin was worth more than $46,300 on April 1, 2022. That’s a more than 9,000% increase.
2. Ethereum (ETH)—Market capitalization—$415 billion
Ethereum is a popular cryptocurrency and blockchain platform among programmers because of its many applications, including smart contracts that execute automatically when conditions hold and non-fungible tokens (NFTs).
It has grown tremendously as well. From April 2016 to the beginning of April 2022, its price increased by more than 31,000 percent, rising from about $11 to over $3,450.
3. Binance Coin (BNB)—Market capitalization—$68 billion
The Binance Coin is a cryptocurrency that may use to trade and pay fees on Binance, one of the world’s biggest cryptocurrency exchanges.
Binance Coin has grown beyond just conducting deals on Binance’s exchange platform since its inception in 2017. It is now possible to utilize it for business, payment processing, and even organizing trip plans. BNB, sometimes exchanged as Ethereum or Bitcoin, among other cryptocurrencies.
4. Terra (LUNA)—Market capitalization—$37.5 billion
Terra is a blockchain payment network for stable coins that is based on the exchange of two kinds of cryptocurrencies.
Stable coinage backed by Terra, such as TerraUSD, is connected to actual currencies’ value. Luna, the Terra platform’s counterbalance, is utilized to produce new Terra stable currencies.
Terra stable coins and Luna function together based on supply and demand. When the price of a stable coin rises beyond the value of its linked currency, users will incentivize to ‘burn’ their Luna to generate more Terra stable coins.
When you burn bitcoin, you permanently withdraw a certain amount of tokens from circulation. Transferring the tokens in question to a ‘burn address,’ such as a digital wallet, from which they will never reclaim, is a common method.
Similarly, when the value of a stable coin declines from its base currency, users are prompted to burn their Terra stable coins to make more Luna. As the Terra platforms gain popularity, the value of Luna rises.
Luna was valued at around $0.7 at the start of last year, but it has since risen to $110 in March.
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Disclaimer: Investing in the cryptocurrency market is fraught with danger. Investing in cryptocurrencies and NFTs has a risk of loss. It is easy to lose sight of your principles. Before investing your money, please do your homework.
Note: It should be noted that investing in cryptocurrencies is not for everyone. The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), the UK’s financial watchdog, offers frequent warnings to consumers regarding the crypto business. The FCA advises potential investors that crypto assets are unregulated and high-risk, which means they “are highly unlikely to have any protection if things go wrong, therefore consumers should be prepared to lose all their money if they choose to invest in them.”