The last two years have been tough ones for cryptocurrency investors, particularly for those trading in alt-coins (tokens other than bitcoin). After reaching record price highs during the late 2017 cryptocurrency investment boom, most alt-coin prices crashed hard in early 2018. Many returned to values last seen in 2016, where they remain remain today. Will this price stagnation last forever, or is there good reason to think that this year could see a major reversal of that trend?
Let’s take a look at five reasons that the alt-coin market could rally in 2020.
1. Bitcoin is on an upswing ahead of its 2020 halving. It’s no secret that the entire cryptocurrency market is still very much driven by bitcoin’s price. As BTC’s price goes up — widely expected to happen later this year following the “halving” of the block reward in May — it will likely pull the entire cryptocurrency market along for the ride.
2. Ethereum hard forks appear to be working. Following two successful hard forks — “Istanbul” and “Muir Glacier” — the Ethereum network seems to primed for growth in 2020. That’s good news for the hundreds of ERC-20 alt-coins that rely on the Ethereum network for their continued existence.
3. Facebook’s Libra push could open the door for wider token investment. After facing significant pushback from lawmakers across the globe in 2019, Facebook appears to be moving forward with its planned Libra “stablecoin” token. When an innovation-driven tech behemoth like Facebook begins investing in cryptocurrency, it’s only a matter of time before other corporate giants begin placing their own bets in the market. Bitcoin will likely be the biggest beneficiary, but smart-contract platforms like ETH, EOS, and IOTA will likely see major investments as well.
4. Ripple is rapidly becoming the international banking blockchain. The third-largest cryptocurrency by market cap, Ripple Lab’s XRP token is just the public-facing side of a much larger network that aims to bring near-instant settlement to global financial institutions. Hundreds of banks now use Ripple’s xCurrent technology, and 2020 may see the network’s increased demand finally spill over into XRP’s trading price. While XRP’s status a “true” cryptocurrency is open to debate, a spike in XRP’s price will almost certainly drive demand for alt-coin tokens.
5. Ongoing development in privacy tokens. As blockchain analysis and investigation tools become more commonplace, many cryptocurrency developers have been increasingly focused on improving privacy-focused tokens such as Monero, Dash, and Zcash. Not surprisingly, “dark net” transactions — driven in large part by the illegal drug market — play a major role. As law enforcement gets better at tracking transactions on major blockchains, black market transactions are increasingly moving to these privacy focused alt-coins, driving up their prices.
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