5 Potential Contenders to Become the ‘Next Big Thing’ in Crypto Market

30 Dec 2021 · 3rd Party Analysis

Top 5 Cryptos

WRITTEN BY ThorFX

In Summary:

  • Crypto markets shift gears as they enter into 2022 with increased buying momentum
  • Five cryptocurrencies are on the watchlist for many traders and we take a look at them

Cryptos Positioned for Growth Heading into 2022

The cryptocurrency market has had a tremendous year of growth. Over the past twelve months, digital assets enjoyed broad acceptance into mainstream finance, newcomers joining the space, and lots of record highs.

As we head into 2022, the fast-emerging crypto industry looks well-positioned for a continuation of the upside trend. More specifically, the investment climate over cryptocurrency is currently better than ever. To this end, analysts and economists predict new all-time highs for leading digital tokens.

Moreover, there are five contenders from the broader market that are likely to draw investor attention over the next twelve months. Some of them you have certainly heard, while others may come as a surprise. Still, be sure that the crypto market will be keenly watched from money managers and retail traders alike as we step into the new year.

Bitcoin to Dominate the Crypto Space in 2022

The leading cryptocurrency, bitcoin, is nothing new to market participants. Nevertheless, we put it in the list due to expected developments that will be key for its growth. In that sense, the “next big thing” to arrive to bitcoin is actually two things.

First, the original cryptocurrency, commanding a valuation of about $1 trillion and a price of $50,000, is looking to get regulated from US financial watchdogs. Namely, these are the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), and the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC). Together with the US Congress, these regulatory bodies are expected to introduce clear rules and structures over bitcoin and cryptos.

More importantly, SEC Chairman Gary Gensler has said multiple times he intends to regulate cryptos as a way to provide safety and security for investors. To this end, analysts predict regulations will be crypto-friendly and tokens will be allowed to continue on their upward trajectory.

Positive Market Sentiment Going into the New Year

In that context, the market sentiment for cryptos for 2022 looks bright and promising. Once regulations set it, they will open the doors to waves of institutional money. We’re talking investment banks acting as bitcoin custodians, hedge funds holding actual bitcoin and so much more.

Further, guardrails over cryptocurrency would increase the legitimacy of the nascent market and millions of newcomers will be happy to join in.

Presently, it’s perfectly legal to invest in bitcoin and cryptocurrencies in places like the UK, the US, and Europe. Still, once rules arrive, the crypto market will flow into mainstream finance and expand at a rapid pace.

Bitcoin Going Green as a Way to Massively Scale Up

Another thing to be a game-changer for bitcoin is solving the carbon footprint. While bitcoin has grown to its present state of a $1 trillion behemoth, it has devoured tremendous amounts of electricity. In practice, the energy used to mine bitcoin every year is about the same as the annual electricity consumption of Norway. And bigger than that of the Netherlands.

In numbers, bitcoin’s carbon footprint is about 57 million tons of CO2 annually. Or roughly 707 kWh of electricity per transaction. In comparison, Ethereum consumes 11 times less per transaction.

This said, crypto circles around the world are working over the clock to find clean-energy sources to mine bitcoin. As a result, the Bitcoin network is expected to scale up significantly with bitcoin’s price shooting higher.

It’s important to note that these two challenges, regulation and clean energy, are a surefire way to boost not only bitcoin but the whole market. Once these are taken care of, the cryptocurrency industry is expected to take off to record-high levels.

Ethereum’s Upgrade to Fuel ETH’s Price Higher

That leads us to our second contender for a top cryptocurrency in 2022: Ethereum.

Ether is the second-largest cryptocurrency out there and boasts a valuation of about $500 billion and a price of $4,000. The Ethereum token is about to go through some finishing touches before its major upgrade is complete. In more detail, the Ethereum blockchain is now into its 2.0 upgrade that is expected to greatly improve the network.

During the upgrade, crypto communities voted to accept the coin-burning mechanism and reduce transaction fees. What’s left to do is transition the network from its current Proof-of-Work to Proof-of-Stake. In other words, the Proof-of-Stake consensus mechanism will be a major factor in boosting Ethereum’s transaction throughput.

Once the upgrade is complete, analysts expect ETH to reach a new all-time high.

Additionally, Ethereum is the most actively used blockchain in the world. Applications like Decentralized Finance (DeFi) and non-fungible tokens (NFTs) have become popular largely due to Ethereum being the underlying blockchain handling their operations.

Solana to Rival the Ethereum Blockchain in 2022

The third popular bet among crypto circles is Solana. The cryptocurrency was founded in November 2017 by Anatoly Yakovenko. This year, the Solana token has experienced a tremendous run to the upside. More than 12,000% were added to Solana’s price as its currently floating around the $200-milestone. That puts its market cap at around $60 billion.

In reality, Solana is a blockchain platform designed to accommodate decentralized applications like DeFi and NFTs. To this end, many consider it a strong rival of Ethereum and its blockchain capabilities.

Stakes for Solana’s performance in 2022 are high and many investors will be looking to grab a piece of it.

Dogecoin or “the People’s Crypto” to Remain Elon Musk’s Favorite

The 2022 outlook won’t be complete if we don’t put a meme-coin into it. Dogecoin, the cryptocurrency created as a joke in 2013, is highly likely to rise over the next twelve months. Several factors are expected to contribute to the token’s rally.

First, a household name in the corporate world, electric-car maker Tesla, is about to roll out merchandise you can buy with Dogecoin. Moreover, Tesla CEO Elon Musk has publicly endorsed Dogecoin, calling it “the people’s crypto.”

Dogecoin is presently hovering near 18 cents with a market cap of about $23 billion.

Monero as a Way to Remain Anonymous and Private

To complete the list of five tokens positioned for growth in 2022, analysts put Monero at number five. Monero is a secure, private and anonymous digital currency. It’s also open source and its development is entirely based on donations and driven by the community around the world.

Since its creation in 2014, Monero’s primary focus has been decentralization, privacy and anonymity. To achieve this, a unique technique called “ring signatures” is put to use. In more detail, this technique makes a transaction secure and private as it includes one real participant but also adds a group of others that appear valid as well.

Monero is the go-to choice for traders and investors looking to add a completely private and anonymous token to their portfolio. In December 2021, the cryptocurrency is trading near $200 per coin with a market cap of about $3.5 billion.

What are Some Other Cryptos that Investors Will Follow in 2022?

Many cryptocurrencies are worth considering as the crypto market moves into next year. You might want to keep an eye on Cardano, Ripple, Avalanche, Neo, and Polkadot.

Additionally, you may track the movements in Shiba Inu, a Dogecoin rival that surged more than 13,000,000% in just 15 months. In other words, only $20 invested on August 1 would have made you a millionaire at current market price of about $0.00003636. In December 2021, Shiba Inu boasts a market cap of $21 billion.

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