Over the past five years, the market cap of the crypto world has seen huge changes. From 2017 to today, market capitalization, as reported on sites such as CoinMarketCap, has risen and fallen by several billion dollars.
What has also changed is the top 10 largest capitalized cryptocurrencies, which have not always kept the same ranking over time.
What is market cap?
Market capitalization, broadly speaking, is the total value of a company or asset.
In the case of cryptocurrencies, it is the sum of the value of all cryptocurrencies in circulation and is calculated by multiplying the number of coins in circulation by the price of one each currency.
How the market cap has changed over the past 5 years
Taking the date of writing this article as a reference, today the market capitalization of cryptocurrencies as a whole is $1.08 trillion.
A year ago, however, this figure was even higher. In 2021, most of the cryptocurrencies reached their all-time highs in terms of price, so it is only natural that the market cap was even higher. We are talking of as much as $1.85 trillion as of August 2021.
Between 2017 and 2020, we see a steady growth from year to year: if in 2018 the market cap had almost doubled over the previous year from $125 billion to $225 billion, during 2019 it had risen to $305 billion and then to $356 billion in 2020.
A very interesting growth is the one occurring between 2017 to 2018 seeing that, after the period of ICOs, adoption starts to get bigger and the market cap doubles.
However, what is especially important is to highlight the period between 2020 and 2021, when crypto market capitalization actually more than tripled from 356 billion to 1.85 trillion. 2021 is in fact, as we have mentioned, the year when many cryptocurrencies marked their all-time highs and the period also when NFTs come into their own, helping the industry get closer to the masses.
Here is a tweet summarizing this ranking:
Total #Cryptocurrency Market Cap:
Today: $1.08 trillion
1 year ago: $1.85 trillion
2 years ago: $356 billion
3 years ago: $305 billion
4 years ago: $225 billion
5 years ago: $125 billion
— Watcher.Guru (@WatcherGuru) August 10, 2022
The top 10 crypto from 2022 to 2017
As we mentioned, in addition to the total cryptocurrency market cap, the order of cryptocurrencies by market capitalization has also changed over the years, although Bitcoin has always led the way.
For example, while in 2017 we found the Bitcoin Cash fork in third place, today there is the stablecoin Tether (USDT), whereas in fourth place in 2017 there was Ripple (XRP) instead of the current Binance Coin (BNB).
Other changes are also found in the next positions, with IOTA, NEM, Monero, and Dash now completely dropping out of the top 10 to give way to the other stablecoin USD Coin (USDC), Solana, Terra, and Dogecoin, at least according to the February 2022 data.
If we then take the top 10 from the present day right now, as of August 2022, the list changes again and we find BUSD, the stablecoin of Binance and Polkadot instead of Terra and Dogecoin (the latter is now in 11th place).
The top 10 crypto before 2017
Of course, even before 2017, the market capitalization of cryptocurrencies varied significantly, and the top 10 cryptocurrencies also shifted constantly, partly due to the emergence of new projects.
If in 2014 it was Bitcoin (BTC), XRP, Litecoin (LTC) and Dogecoin (DOGE) that dominated the scene, following the launch of Monero (XMR), the latter entered the top ranks.
Then in 2015 the now-unknown StrongHands (SHND) project also peeped into the top 10, which now ranks 2365.
In March 2017, Verge (XVG) had also entered the rankings, and Bitcoin Cash (BCH) in August 2018.
Dash (DASH), Nem (XEM), Stellar (XLM), and EOS (EOS) have also entered the rankings from time to time over the years, from 2014 to the present.