Though the month of March, the last of the year’s first quarter, started promising, it witnessed a major plunge of the market. The number one coin by market capitalization, bitcoin (BTC), took a swift dive to the USD 4,000 level and despite it recovered around 50% of its losses it dropped for the third quarter in a row.
The crash has naturally had a significant impact on the overall 1-month picture, as well as that of the entire quarter. Suffice to say, the picture is not looking its best on either front, though granted, the 1st-quarter numbers look better in comparison. The fields are greener in the first three months thanks to a good start the market has seen this year. The relatively good start of March was far from enough to balance the crash out.
Top 10 Coins
Zooming into the previous – very eventful – month, we see that the majority of coins went through a significant, double-digit drop.
Top ten coins by market capitalization were most certainly not spared any of the impact brought on by the plunge, which itself many believe has roots in the global economic crisis, itself triggered by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Only three of the ten coins have closed the month with a drop of lower than 30%. Meanwhile, the one that flew the highest in February and had been on a roll since December, tezos (XTZ), dropped the most (40%).
The other coins with the largest drops are not far behind tezos though, as ethereum (ETH) and EOS have just a point or two difference.
Meanwhile, the first quarter of this year looks somewhat better than the one-month situation. Though there are losses among the coins, there are also clear gains.
In the third quarter of 2019, BTC dropped c. 22%, while in the fourth quarter of that same year, it fell 13%. This makes it the third quarter in the row that BTC has closed with a loss, this time with 11%, the smallest one yet.
Besides BTC, other coins in red are EOS, with the largest drop on the list of over 14%, then, XRP, binance coin (BNB), and litecoin (LTC), in that order.
There has been much discussion on the losses that BTC has suffered in the past month, and the reasons behind it, including that the price movements were mostly driven by shorter-term and relatively new holders, as found by crypto market analysis firm Coin Metrics. But the general consensus seems to be that the pandemic was the major instigator.
Mati Greenspan, Founder of QuantumEconomics.io, writes that Bitcoin itself can’t catch Coronavirus, but we’re still seeing its effects "play out in Bitcoin’s network." The number of transactions dropped to its lowest levels since the 2018 crypto winter, he says. On the other hand, "daily Bitcoin volume is averaging just over USD 1 billion, which is sharply lower than it was a month ago but still pretty high compared to historical averages."
“Bitcoin is a highly speculative instrument so in such risk-averse markets, it’s naturally a front-runner to be offloaded,” Craig Erlam, senior market analyst at Oanda told Bloomberg. "If anyone was holding it as part of a portfolio, then I would imagine it would also be high on the list of positions to close out to cover margin calls or losses elsewhere."
Top 10 winners in March
We don’t have winners. We have a winner. Among the top 50 coins by market capitalization, only one coin did not finish the month of March with a drop, that being Bitfinex Leo Token (LEO). It shows a gain of almost 10%.
The next in line would be the top 50’s coin with the smallest drop – FTX Token (FTT) with a loss of almost 10%.
Top 10 losers in March
While FTT may be at the bottom of the top 50 by market capitalization, the ten coins at the top of the red list took much greater dives in March. Algorand (ALGO) is in the first spot on this list, having suffered a 55% loss. The rest of the coins on the list have all dropped 40% and more, between Ontology (ONT) on the second spot behind ALGO with -47% and ETH in the last place.
Winners & losers from top 100/200
Moving from the top 50 into the top 100 coins by market capitalization, we see a somewhat better picture. While there are certainly plenty of red coins, we also find eight green coins, including LEO and not counting stablecoins. Insolar (XNS) is standing at the first spot with a rise of 576% in March. It’s followed by numeraire (NMR) with +92% and poseidon network (QQQ) with 91%. The fourth placed energi (NRG) has gone up 40%; quant network (QNT) and status (SNT) are up between 15% and 19%, while the last to appreciate is stratis (STRAT) with 2%. Insure (SURE) saw the largest drop here of 70%, followed by algo.
Meanwhile, in the top 200 by market capitalization, we see 21 coins that have appreciated in total. Calfin Global Crypto Exchange (CGCX) stands on top here with a rise of 587%. Insolar is in the second place, while streamr (DATA) is behind it with +289%. Cortex (CTXC) and gxchain (GXC) are the last two coins to make this winners list. Folgory Coin (FLG) dropped the most in March, -97%, and it’s followed by SURE and then swipe (SXP) with -69%. The rest of the reddest ten coins in the top 200 have fallen 50% and more. The coin to have dropped the least is BTCHD (BHD) with -1.4%.
Top 10 winners in Q1
Unlike what we’ve seen in March, we have ten clear winners in the past quarter. This list is led by hedera hashgraph (HBAR) and its near 200% gain, while the second-placed icon (ICX) appreciated 109% and the third-placed lisk (LSK) 73%. The next four coins went up 40%-70%, and the last three coins appreciated between 24% and 33%, these being chainlink (LINK), LEO, and bitcoin gold (BTG).
Top 10 losers in Q1
On the other hand, among the top 50 by market capitalization, we have plenty of losers in the first quarter as well. Cosmos (ATOM) is the first-placed here, having dropped 55%, followed by synthetix (SNX) with -45%. The least to drop on this list is NEO with 24%, with the other coins on the list falling between it and SNX.
Winners & losers from top 100/200
Among the top 100 coins by market capitalization, we find insolar at the top again for the last quarter. It went up 353%. QQQ follows it with 224%, and so does HBAR. The least to appreciate here is monero (XMR) with almost 4%. Among the coins in red, SURE is at the top with -69%, while ATOM sits in the second spot and holo (HOT) in the third with -50%.
Adding the next 100 coins by market capitalization to the mix, we find CGCX appreciating a whopping 1,000%. Meanwhile, the second-placed unibright (UBT) went up 444%. The least to rise among the 200 in the past quarter is ETH. Switching to the red coins, MOF is at the top with a fall of 85% in the last three months, followed by SXP with -72%. KCS is at the bottom of this list as well.
We have started a new month today, and things – at least in this short hour – seem hopeful, though the market woke up red on this first day of April. Furthermore, it’s the first day of the quarter that has Bitcoin halving scheduled, so it’ll be interesting to see its effects as we move closer to the event.