Cryptocurrencies To Add To Your Watchlist In 2021

DISCLAIMER: This article is purely for educational purposes and does not constitute trading, financial, or investment advice.

The cryptocurrency space witnessed the wildest and most impactful bull runs unarguably in the history of the nascent industry from December 2020 till mid-2021. While the recent run bears many similarities with that of 2017, which saw Bitcoin break above $20k for the first time, there was a striking difference – the entry of institutional investors.

Microstrategy and Tesla under the leadership of Bitcoin advocates, Michael Saylor and Elon Musk respectively became the first set of publicly listed companies to add Bitcoin to their balance sheets. This trend gradually became a norm, rather than an exception, as cryptocurrencies showed great promise to become a superior store of value to gold and fiat. Data from BitcoinTreasuries shows that 34 publicly listed companies hold about $7.3 billion worth of Bitcoin – representing 1.02% of the digital asset’s total supply.

Altcoins have also continued to impress on the charts, with the most popular of them cashing in on the DeFi and NFT frenzy to record groundbreaking gains. Despite the massive correction that followed in May, analysts expect 2021 to be a notable year in the cryptocurrency space. Having experienced the highs and the lows in H1 2021, here are some cryptocurrencies that are “watchlist worthy” for the rest of the year.

Binance Coin (BNB)

The development of the Binance Smart Chain (BSC) by a cryptocurrency exchange, Binance ushered in a plethora of opportunities for decentralized application developers and cryptocurrency enthusiasts. It presented a viable alternative for people to build user-friendly dApps powered by smart contracts. BSC aims to wrestle Ethereum’s dominance as the leading Dapp builder by offering a high transaction speed and significantly lesser gas fees.

Binance Coin (BNB), the native coin of the ecosystem, has enjoyed success with the growing utility of its parent blockchain. Currently ranked fourth on the list of the largest cryptocurrencies by market cap, BNB skyrocketed to an all-time high of $690 on May 10 after starting the year at around $38. Despite retracing by 53% since reaching ATH, BNB boasts of a 752% increase since January 2021. Analysts believe BNB is still underpriced because of its utility in the DeFi and NFT scene. With the launch of the eagerly anticipated Binance NFT marketplace, the basis of this argument is not far-fetched.

Cardano (ADA)

Cardano is making good on its promise to “redistribute power from unaccountable structures to the margins to individuals” by fully adopting smart contracts and becoming decentralized.

The Proof-of-Stake project’s native coin, ADA traded at $0.17 at the start of the year and rallied to $2.31 before retracing by 45% to its current price. Between the upward trajectory, ADA momentarily flipped BNB in May to rank fourth on the largest cryptocurrency list. With a series of upgrades still to come, ADA is widely touted to be one of the most promising digital assets.

Uniswap/Pancakeswap (UNI/CAKE)

Decentralized exchanges are by far the biggest innovation of the DeFi revolution. Top DEXs, Uniswap, and Pancakeswap offer automated market maker (AMM) based trading, which differs significantly from the custodial order book approach on centralized exchanges. In the wake of the DeFi boom, both decentralized exchanges have recorded massive growth in trading volumes and in the price of their native tokens, UNI and CAKE. If the trend continues, both platforms may experience a further increase in usage and trading volumes, which can only mean one thing for both tokens.

Ethereum (ETH)

Despite facing stiff competition, Ethereum still stakes a claim in the list of cryptocurrencies to watch out for. The first half of the year featured a rather bumpy ride to an all-time high, with the soaring gas fees posing a threat to its utility. Ethereum developers are however working to ensure a seamless transition to the fresh Proof-of-stake Eth 2.0 upgrade. The new upgrade will reduce the gas fees and increase transaction throughput.

These developments could spell a new era for ETH as many analysts tip the second-largest cryptocurrency to reach $10k at the end of the year.

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