In these early days of September, Bitcoin’s dominance has fallen, while Ethereum’s has risen.
In particular, using CoinGecko’s data, Bitcoin’s dominance today has actually fallen below 40%, although it has stopped at 39%, without falling as far as, for example, 37% in mid-May.
Ethereum dominance on the rise
Today, dominance is at its highest level since 2021, equalling 19% in mid-May, which is similar to the value it last achieved in February 2018, during the bursting of the speculative bubble in late 2017.
However, this is neither the all-time high for Ethereum nor the all-time low for Bitcoin.
Dominance trivially measures the percentage of a cryptocurrency’s market capitalization relative to the entire market cap of all cryptocurrencies combined.
It is therefore purely theoretical, like market capitalization, but useful both for making comparisons over time and for comparing different cryptocurrencies to each other.
Until March, Bitcoin’s dominance this year had been around 50%. That is, BTC’s single market capitalization was higher than that of all other cryptocurrencies combined, including ETH.
It had been continuously hovering between 50% and 70% since August 2018, but starting in April, the remarkable rise in altcoin prices began to erode it quite quickly.
In fact, in less than two months it went from 59% to 37%, and then recovered back to 46% at the end of July.
Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies
Ethereum’s dominance, after booming at the end of 2017 and beginning of 2018, began to decline, until it reached a minimum peak of 7% between September 2019 and January 2020.
By early 2021 it had already risen back to 10%, and after a brief boom to 16% in early February, it was back to 11% by the end of March.
As soon as the price of BTC stopped rising and the price of ETH started to rise consistently, Ethereum’s dominance went from 11% at the end of March to 19% in mid-May.
It then fell again, but only to 16% at the end of June, before starting to rise again to 19%.
It should be noted that all other cryptocurrencies combined currently have a 42% dominance, compared to 39% for Bitcoin and 19% for Ethereum. So even excluding ETH, BTC is not currently worth more than all other cryptocurrencies combined.
A new capitalization
In the entire history of Bitcoin, it has never happened that another cryptocurrency had a higher market capitalization, except for errors in calculation or detection, or irrelevant spikes of very short duration.
By far the lowest point was reached in early January 2018, when the speculative bubble of late 2017 on the price of BTC had by then burst, while the one on altcoins like ETH had yet to burst.
At the time, BTC’s dominance had fallen to 32%, with ETH‘s dominance flying in the following days to 22%. In other words, no cryptocurrency has ever even remotely managed to challenge Bitcoin’s leadership in this respect.
Even now, BTC’s market capitalization is more than double that of its main rival in this respect, namely ETH.
Finally, it is worth remembering that in 2017 Bitcoin’s dominance had fallen from 84% at the beginning of the year to 38% in mid-June, then rose again to over 60% in December, at the height of the speculative bubble, and fell again to 32% about a month later, i.e. just before the bursting of the speculative bubble on altcoins.