The skyrocketing price of bitcoin gave rise to ethereum, ripple and other altcoins. However, the bullish market, which has spawned over 1,500 cryptocurrencies, has turned bearish, and some cryptos are imploding.
Bittrex, a major US-based cryptocurrency exchange, said it would remove a total of 82 altcoins from its listings by March 30. The majority of the delisted alternative cryptocurrencies have broken blockchains, were abandoned by their developers, or were acknowledged as scams or pump and dump schemes.
Some of the de-listed coins have a multimillion-dollar capitalization. For example, neutron, which is now worth less than $5 million, peaked at $32.6 million in January. Sprouts, a cryptocurrency currently worth $3 million, was once pumped to the level of $60 million. Bitcoin dominance on the cryptocurrency market, tracked by Coinmarketcap, is slowly growing again. At the dawn of cryptocurrencies, it had a more than 90 percent share in the market.
As the number of altcoins grew, bitcoin’s share fell to an all-time low of 32 percent in the first half of January. At the same time, the market capitalization of all cryptocurrencies reached a historic high of $835 billion.
That signaled time for the sell-off on the overheated market to begin. In a matter of three months, the value of all cryptocurrencies shrank by an astounding $557 billion. Many altcoins didn’t survive the crash, and bitcoin's dominance is growing again, climbing to the 50 percent level.