10 Best performing Cryptocurrencies of 2020

January 4, 2021

Reading Time: 4 minutes

The cryptocurrency market has soared significantly in value all year long, headless of the melancholic global economy and the aftermath of COVID-19 chaos. Bitcoin prices have crossed its once found peak, and the leading crypto asset in terms of market capitalisation has gained a phenomenal 230% since early January 2020.

2020 has been eventful, and while global economics worldwide struggle, the crypto economy is booming. COVID-19 and the individual responses to the virus entailed a shutdown of a large section of the worldwide economy, locking down healthy citizens and inflicting financial chaos on the masses.

Additionally, stocks, bonds, equities, and a plethora of traditional assets and commodities lost value in mid-March, the bottom plummeted on everything, including digital asset markets.

Interestingly, the Cryptocurrency market persevered, and a significant number of digital assets have excelled in nearly every traditional investment there is. Data suggests Bitcoins were trading at $7,400 per coin in early January, and since then it has gained over 230% in value to date.

What may have caused it?

Experts suggest that the emerging Defi protocols’ emerging wave transformed the crypto ecosystem with high-volume, high-yield unicorns that generated consistent returns for investors regularly.

Despite the chaotic turn of events in 2020, the decentralised principles of cryptocurrencies truly bloomed. Moreover, the decentralized, p2p trading within smart contracts made its way into a newly established ecosystem that enabled diverse income-generating projects accessible by any investor with a few dollars worth of the dominant cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin, Ethereum, and XRP.

The success and consistency of high returns on Defi tokens lead cryptocurrencies to gain a lot of value.

So what may have caused Defi protocols to perform in 2020 consistently?

While it can be argued Uniswap was the pioneer of catalysing the Defi boom. By establishing a new ecosystem where anyone could create and launch a token on the Ethereum blockchain without having to go through the hassles of listing fees to exchanges or going through incubation programs.

Uniswap went from averaging less than a million dollars in daily volume in the first half of 2020 to a whopping $1 billion in daily volume after catalysing the summer of Defi and Cryptocurrencies.

Moreover, the newfound acceptance from payment giants such as Paypal, Visa, and Mastercard also had a massive role in promoting the adoption of cryptocurrencies.

The top 10 performing cryptocurrencies in 2020

2020 was quickly one of the most challenging and gruelling years for global economies and traditional financial institutes.

Interestingly, the top 10 cryptocurrencies in early January according to historical prices were Bitcoin, Ethereum, Ripple, Tether, Bitcoin Cash, Litecoin, EOS, Binance Coin, Bitcoin SV, and Monero. However, a lot has changed.

Bitcoin

Bitcoin recently went through its third halving in mid-May allowing it to double in the 4th Quarter. However, while Bitcoin may be the reigning leader in market capitalisation and valuation, it was not the top-performing cryptocurrency over the year. Several other assets performed exceptionally well compared to Bitcoin, despite these the currencies have yet to surpass their all-time price highs.

Ethereum

Interestingly, Ethereum has been performing much better in contrast to Bitcoin. Ethereum’s Ether was valued at  $136 per coin in early January; Today Ether has crossed the $600 mark, gaining 337% in value since then. Its market cap went from $14.4 billion in early January to almost $80 billion in Mid-December, projecting a whopping 380% increase. Analysts suggest that Ethereum’s new protocol Ethereum 2.0 speculated a lot of investor interest, allowing Ethereum to gain a lot of value.

XRP

Moreover, XRP performed better too. Ripple’s XRP was priced at $0.19 in early January; today, it is priced at $0.61, gaining 221% in value from its initial value.

Stellar (XLM)

Stellar Lumen has undoubtedly been one of the best performers in the cryptocurrency industry over this year. It was trading at $0.04 in early January to $0.2 in December 2020, gaining a whopping 400% in value from its initial value.

Chainlink

Chainlink’s Link held the 20th largest market capitalisation in the market, valued at $1.81 per token in early January. Interestingly, Link is up over 600% priced at $13.20 per coin today. Moreover, Chainlink has moved up 13 ranks in the market, placing itself on the 7th largest market capitalisation in the market thanks to DeFi summer.

AAVE (LEND)

The decentralised lending protocol with its own token, LEND, has boomed especially thanks to the adoption of Defi protocols in 2020. In early January, LEND was swapping for $0.01; However, today the token is worth $89. In under three months, the token placed 27th in market cap rankings with over $1 billion.

Cardano ADA

Another asset in the market that performed exceptionally well is Cardano’s ADA. Holding the 8th rank this week, Cardano swapped for $0.03 in early January, and since then it has jumped 400% and is priced at %0.15 per coin today.

Zap

Some honourable mentions also include lesser-known tokens that saw some unexpected and mind-blowing gains in 2020, dishing out the pack’s top by a long shot. To illustrate, data suggests that Gamestars has gained over a whopping 69,000% against the USD. Following tokens such as ZAP surging over 6000%.

Auctus and Starchain

Other tokens include Auctus soaring with a 5,500% gain, followed by AACE and Starchain gaining a phenomenal 5100% and 3,700% respectively.

USDC

The highest daily volumes USDC project were $426 million; However, today it hasn’t even dipped below the $450 million mark, according to data. USDC has surged to a market cap well over $3 billion after beginning the year with a market cap of $500 million.

Conclusion

2020 has been an uncertain, chaotic, and eventful year for the world. Fortunately, the long-awaited crypto spring has finally set its blooming colours as Bitcoin, Ehtereum, Ripple, Chainlink, and other assets reach new heights. Predicting the happenings of 2021 is not possible for anyone; however, it is much expected that Cryptocurrencies are going in strong into the new year.

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