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THE YEAR IN REVIEW: Top traded cryptocurrencies of 2019

By Charlotte Ricca

Bitcoin remains top dog but new cryptocurrencies are snapping at its heels

Trading in cryptocurrency can be extremely profitable, as prices fluctuate rapidly. However, the search for low-risk and high-reward altcoin can make the markets volatile.

Bitcoin is still top dog and, despite its recent slump in value, remains one of the best-performing assets in 2019. However, there are a number of new kids on the digital block, snapping at its heels.

Let’s take a look at the top-traded cryptocurrencies of 2019.

Bitcoin

Bitcoin remains a market leader, despite the fact that prices reached a six-month low in November, declining more than 50 per cent from their 2019 high of almost $14,000. At the time of writing, BTC trades at about $7,537.

Analysts remain bullish, expecting the coin to rally ahead of its next halving, which is due to take place in May 2020. Investors are also hopeful that Bitcoin ETF will be approved by the US Securities Exchange Commission, although its decision has been delayed until February 26.

Ripple

Launched in 2012, Ripple “enables banks to settle cross-border payments in real-time, with end-to-end transparency, and at lower costs.”

What makes Ripple different from other altcoins is that it consensus ledger doesn’t require mining.

It is the native currency of the Ripple ledger and is an agent used by xRapid. Since MoneyGram, the second-largest money transfer platform in the world, started using xRapid in April 2019 investors are watching to see how many Ripple partners choose to integrate the cross-border payments solution in their operations. The coin XRP posted the second-highest trading activity in November and is currently trading at $0.1960.

Ether

Ether is the world’s second most popular crypto after Bitcoin. Its smart contracting platform, Ethereum, is the brainchild of one of crypto’s most famous innovators, Vitalik Buterin. It enables smart contracts and decentralised applications (DApps) to be built and run without any downtime, fraud, control, or interference from third parties.

Despite its market cap being higher than that of XRP, ETH was the third most actively traded coin last month. Presently, ETH costs $133.07 a pop.

Tron

TRX is a cryptocurrency that fuels the Tron blockchain. Founded in 2017 by Justin Sun, who is also the CEO of BitTorrent, the platform aims to create an open-source content entertainment ecosystem, while competing with Ethereum and other smart contracting platforms.

TRX was one the most traded cryptocurrencies in November, despite the fact that Sun continues to attract controversy.

TRX currently trades at $0.014279.

NEO

NEO is China’s largest cryptocurrency and is often dubbed as “Chinese Ethereum” because of its similar use of smart contracts. Its positive relationship with the Chinese president, who has spoken out against cryptocurrencies, has certainly been beneficial.

The recent announcement by Chinese President Xi Jinping that the country would be prioritising blockchain going forward has certainly peaked the interest of investors. As of December 23 NEO is trading at $8.91.

Stellar

Stellar is an open source, decentralised protocol for digital currency to fiat money transfers which allows cross-border transactions between any pair of currencies. It was created in 2014 by Jed McCaleb, who was a co-founder of Ripple and is now their key competitor.

Its native cryptocurrency is Lumens (XLM). Following the burning of 50 per cent of XLM supply in November, investors expect demand to increase, lifting prices from a current lull. Lumens (XLM), currently trades at $0.0461.

FURTHER READING: US regulator delays decision on world’s first Bitcoin ETF

FURTHER READING: Coinfloor to delist Ethereum and focus on Bitcoin

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