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Litecoin seems to be moving away from Bitcoin’s shadow as it continues to rise in price. Originally, former Google and Coinbase employee Charlie Lee created it to be the ‘silver to Bitcoin’s gold’, an easier and cheaper way for potential investors to dip their toes into cryptocurrency trading. Launched back in 2011, it used to be nowhere near it’s bigger counterpart’s position in the market, but last year proved it can go head to head with more popular cryptocurrencies. Litecoin’s value rose 4,215% in 2017, starting the year at just £3.19. Now, the digital currency is valued at £174.50 a Litecoin.
Last year also saw Litecoin reach its highest point, valuing up to £272.90 a Litecoin. Surprisingly, Coinwire indicated that its creator Charlie Lee responded to the surge by selling all his Litecoins. He insisted that his move was done to provide more transparency for the cryptocurrency, explaining that his social media comments may have influenced Litecoin’s performance. He says the step will benefit Litecoin in the long run, stating that he is now fully-committed to developing the altcoin, staying more focused without the distraction of its price.
Although Lee’s divestment did not have a grave impact on the market, it can still affect how traders will treat the altcoin. Finance journalist Gian Volpicelli emphasised that cryptocurrencies have long been referred to as ‘financial bubbles’, ever since they first emerged. As their markets grow with new investors, experts’ concerns regarding the bursting of the bubbles get amplified as well. The price surge of Bitcoin, Litecoin, and other altcoins are even seen by some as lead-ups to the possible crash of the cryptocurrency market. However, MIT historian William Derringer argues that if the cryptocurrency market really is a bubble, it would have popped already.
Since it hasn’t happened, several analysts believe that Litecoin will still continue to rise. An article on Stocks Gazette even relayed the prediction that it will go as high as £1,106.35 this year, as well as forecasts showing that its market capitalisation will reach £60 billion. These strong projections were made because the altcoin is expected to be bigger and better this 2018, with more developments expected to be released from its creator. Some of its advancements may include more private transaction options and the potential to layer smart contracts.
Currently, Litecoin has already been more favoured than many bigger cryptocurrencies, mostly because of speed. Compared to Bitcoins, the altcoin is much faster to transact taking only 2.5 minutes, as opposed to the former’s 10 minutes. It also implements technical upgrades much faster than both the Bitcoin and Ethereum, which enabled it to temporarily outrank more popular digital currencies. Litecoin attracted more investors who prefer to deal with financing quicker, and many of them seek cryptocurrencies for this very reason.
For now, there’s no assurance that Litecoin will continue its trajectory upwards. There are numerous scenarios that could happen, which could see the cryptocurrency’s value decrease and maybe burst its bubble as many analysts have warned. However, the market is still growing and its developers are working hard to make the altcoin the very best of its kind. Further advancements have already been announced, some of which have prompted its price to rise once again. And despite the controversy that surrounded its founder, Litecoin still performed exceptionally well in 2017.
Taking all of these things into account, it goes to show that this cryptocurrency is stronger than it seems.