No Signs of Crypto Revival as Weekend Begins; XRP Overtakes Ethereum by a Wider Margin
Bitcoin and alternative cryptocurrencies remained under pressure Saturday following one of the worst drops of 2018, as the fallout from the bitcoin cash hard fork offered little reassurance that the market had moved past the divisive rhetoric.
Market Update and XRP/Ethereum “Flippening”
The combined market value of all cryptocurrencies averaged $183 billion on Saturday, according to CoinMarketCap. Crypto values bottomed at 13-month lows Thursday and have since made only a modest recovery attempt.
Total trade volumes have declined sharply over the last 48 hours, falling from a high near $25 billion all the way back down to $13.6 billion. The top-three exchanges by daily trade volume – Binance, OKEx and Huobi – reported double digit declines in turnover.
In terms of individual coins, bitcoin saw an average exchange price of $5,567, down 0.6% compared with Friday. At current values, BTC has a total market capitalization of $96.8 billion.
Ethereum, bitcoin cash and Litecoin all reported 24-hour losses. As Hacked reported earlier, the ETH price is moving within a strong demand area, which could generate a large rally in the short term.
Amid the downtrend, XRP once again emerged as the standout performer. The so-called banker’s cryptocurrency has gained 1% in the last hour and 3.2% compared with Friday to trade at $0.4855. Over the past seven days, XRP has declined just 4.4%. Among top-ten coins, losses ranged between 6% and 20% over the same period.
Perhaps more importantly, XRP has widened its lead over Ethereum in terms of market cap. At the time of writing, XRP was valued at $19.6 billion compared with $17.9 billion for Ethereum.
Bitcoin Cash Hard Fork Aftermath
The cryptocurrency market lost a staggering $37 billion over a two-day selloff that centered on a highly contentious hard fork of bitcoin cash. As Hacked and CCN reported Friday, bitcoin ABC appears to be winning the hash war, with the primary implementation of BCH mining more blocks and featuring more transactions than the competing bitcoin SV chain.
That said, the bitcoin SV camp has reminded observers that the battle for network dominance is a marathon and not a race. Craig Steven Wright, the most vocal supporter of bitcoin SV, tweeted Friday that “We are just at the trials and not yet on the finals to Marathon.” As the battle continues, Wright has warned that the price of bitcoin will continue to be depressed for the foreseeable future.
Roger Ver’s Bitcoin.com mining pool recently announced it was diverting all of its hash power to mine bitcoin ABC blocks. This includes temporarily reallocating hash power from BTC blocks to mine the new chain. The announcement created a bit of a firestorm on Twitter, with some users threatening to take legal action because they have no intent on mining BCH.
Disclaimer: The author owns bitcoin, Ethereum and other cryptocurrencies. He holds investment positions in the coins, but does not engage in short-term or day-trading.
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