Analysts pick the bitcoin rivals to read up on now: Litecoin, Monero, Neo, Cardano, Ripple, Iota and Bitcoin Cash
A massive bubble? A passing fad? A scam?
Whatever the cynics out there want to call bitcoin, its BTCUSD, -5.46% insane rally continues to befuddle the haters and enrich the crypto faithful.
Fear of missing out can have a powerful — and dangerous — influence on financial decisions. It’s playing out in a big way right now as many of those who’ve missed out on the digital currency craze kick themselves and frantically search for the next bitcoin — or something even better.
But does that even exist and is it worth the risk to invest?
While he’s still extremely bullish on what lies ahead for bitcoin, George Tung, co-founder of Cryptos R Us and a veteran of investing in cryptocurrencies, says there’s still plenty of upside opportunity in lesser-known coins.
“Will we see another coin with a market cap exceeding bitcoin?” he said. “Yes, I believe that is definitely possible within the next three to five years.”
“The alts industry is new and it will take at least a few years to become mainstream,” he said, adding “we can see 10x gains — like bitcoin this year, in many alt-coins.”
But with more than 1,300 alt-coins — basically any digital currency that isn’t bitcoin — to choose from, it’s no easy task uncovering potential winners. Tung uses a four-part screener to determine which alt-coins may be worth a flyer.
1. Study the team behind it. “Where do they come from? Have they been involved with other cryptos before? Are they backed by anyone, and what kind of experience do they bring? The alt-coins that have done the best and have the highest market caps have the most proven teams.”
2. Take a look at the why. “How useful is this? Are they trying to solve a problem that doesn’t need solving? Some alt-coins coming out are simply ridiculous.”
3. Determine where they are in the process. “I look at the road map of the alt-coin and see how far along are they. Do they have a test-net or a beta? Are there new features being released? Are there soft or hard forks coming up?”
4. Assess the valuation. “Since alt-coins get pumped and dumped a lot, I look at the current market evaluation and see if they are priced right. A lot of alt-coins are priced way too high and I tend to stay away from them.”
With that in mind, here’s an overview of seven cryptocurrencies that analysts have said may be worth watching in 2018. Like bitcoin, all cryptocurrencies are subject to extreme volatility and risk — so if you intend to invest, it’s well worth doing your due diligence and reading up more on each one.