The crypto currency Litecoin had an incredible day yesterday when it saw its price rise by no less than 80% at one point to a high of around $330 on several exchanges thus creating the world’s fourth largest crypto market cap after Bitcoin, Ethereum and Bitcoin Cash. The same could be said for Ripple which almost doubled in value, rising another 75% while Ethereum also posted incredibly strong gains rising to an all-time high of well over $620. Conversely other major cryptos such as Bitcoin had a rather modest day although it did increase slightly in value, touching the $17,200 mark on some occasions before settling to around $16,500. Bitcoin Cash also saw an impressive increase of between 7 and 15% during the day riding on the coat tails of the other crypto currencies.
The cryptocurrency markets achieved another comprehensive advance on Tuesday, but — breaking from recent norms — the bitcoin price was not leading the rally. That honor belonged to the ethereum price and litecoin price, each of whom surged to all-time highs and helped catalyze a record day for the altcoin markets.
Nevertheless, bitcoin did make a slight advance and coupled with the $20 billion altcoin rally, the total cryptocurrency market cap soared from $444.3 billion to $467.8 billion.
The bitcoin price rallied after U.S. exchange CBOE launched regulated bitcoin Futures contracts on Sunday, but the most prominent cryptocurrency’s performance was a bit more tepid during the first full day of trading. After briefly rising above $17,500, the bitcoin price settled down to a present value of $16,906. This represents a daily increase of one percent and translates into a $283 billion market cap. January futures, meanwhile, were priced at $17,730 at the time of writing.
Notably, bitcoin futures trading currently represents little more than a blip in the market. While CBOE’s $50 million in first-day volume was respectable for a nascent asset class, it pales in comparison to the $12 billion in trades that bitcoin exchanges processed during the same period.
Although ethereum has been in a sustained uptrend throughout the year, it has been unable to match bitcoin’s gains during the fourth quarter. Consequently, it has gradually lost market share, and at one point its corner of the market dropped below 10 percent.
Tuesday brought investors a welcome change. The ethereum price leaped by 16 percent, punching through the $500 barrier and briefly extending as high as $553 — a new record — before ebbing back to a present value of $540. Ethereum now has a market cap of $52.1 billion, raising its market share to 11 percent.
Litecoin Price Headlines $20 Billion Altcoin Rally
More than three-quarters of the top 100 cryptocurrencies rose against the dollar on Tuesday, including every coin and token within the top 10. Many of these gains constituted double-digit percentage increases, which was all the more impressive considering that bitcoin only rose one percent.
The bitcoin cash price rose nearly seven percent, bringing the third-largest cryptocurrency back close to the $1,500 mark, but its performance was eclipsed by the new fourth-largest cryptocurrency: litecoin.
Just days ago, litecoin was trading in the bottom half of the top 10, but it has assembled a breathtaking rally since the weekend. In the past day alone, the litecoin price has soared more than 58 percent to a new all-time high of $260. Litecoin now has a market cap of $14.1 billion, placing it ahead of both IOTA and ripple in the rankings.
Despite losing a spot in the rankings, IOTA did post a double-digit percentage increase for the day, rising more than 13 percent to $4.90. Ripple, meanwhile, increased 11 percent to $0.275. The dash price climbed by 10 percent, bringing it within striking distance of $800, and monero posted a similar movement to bring its price near $300. Next to litecoin, the NEM price returned the best performance of any top 10 coin or token, leaping by 27 percent to $0.546. Bitcoin gold, however, rounded out the top 10 with an increase of just two percent.
The Ethereum price has surged by more than 32 percent over the past 24 hours, achieving a new all-time high at $635 and a daily trading volume of nearly $5 billion.
Last week, CCN reported that the US has become the largest Ethereum exchange market, overtaking South Korea. Two exchanges, Coinbase’s flagship trading platform GDAX and Bitfinex, have accounted for more than 20 percent of global Ether trades over the past few weeks.
Since earlier this week, the popularity of Ether has begun to rebound in the South Korean market, as traders on the country’s three leading exchanges Bithumb, Coinone, and Korbit started to increasingly trade Ether. At the time of reporting, Bithumb, South Korea’s largest cryptocurrency exchange market, accounts for 11 percent of global Ether trades, with a $500 million daily trading volume.
Why is Ether Price Rising?
Throughout today, the market valuation and price of almost every single cryptocurrency in the market have surged. Some, including Litecoin, Dash, and Ether have made significant gains, with Litecoin recording a staggering 80 percent daily increase in value.
Both Litecoin and Ethereum have struggled to make major gains since September and throughout the past two months, the price of Ether and Litecoin have remained stable at around $350 and $100, respectively.
However, over the past 24 hours, the two cryptocurrencies skyrocketed in value, as the demand for cryptocurrencies from the global finance market has increased, primarily due to the successful debut of bitcoin futures on the Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE).
Naturally, the price of Ether, which has continuously been the second largest cryptocurrency behind Ethereum, has increased as more capital and wealth have begun to move from the traditional finance market to the cryptocurrency market.
In several major regions such as South Korea, government agencies and financial authorities have announced their plans to allow initial coin offerings (ICOs). The South Korean government for instance, plans to allow institutional investors and accredited traders to invest in ICOs in the near future, but impose a temporary ban on ICO investment for the general public.
Since late 2016, ICOs have accounted for a major portion of the Ethereum network’s transaction volume and trading volume. Hence, the legalization of ICOs in major regions will have an immediate and large impact on the short-term price trend of Ethereum.
More importantly, the Ethereum transaction volume has been increasing at an exponential rate, likely because of the growing popularity of two decentralized applications (dapps); CryptoKitties and EtherDelta.
As of current, the Ethereum blockchain network settles approximately 830,000 transactions on a daily basis, more than all of the cryptocurrencies in the market including bitcoin combined.