Litecoin has finally joined the club of select cryptocurrencies that broke previous all-time highs this year. Litecoin was probably the most prominent coin that until a few days ago, had not been able to break its 2013 high. On July 5th, that changed. Litecoin reached a new high of $56.03 USD per coin. The significance of this is more than symbolic, given the importance of recent SegWit activation and Litecoin’s performance until April of this year, as compared to Bitcoin and Ether.
Litecoin After SegWit
The price of this altcoin fluctuated between $1.7 USD and $7.7USD from the end of July 2014 until April 2017. This made it the most predictably stable cryptocurrency for more than a year. Since April, the situation changed and Litecoin shows very encouraging signs of sustained growth. In the last 3 months, Litecoin’s prices have grown by over 1,000% as its network gathered more support and media coverage thanks to the implementation of SegWit. This software upgrade that allows the protocol to handle more transactions, is the same upgrade that has been proposed for the Bitcoin blockchain to solve the block size debate. Litecoin implemented it, while bitcoin is still divided over the best way to implement it.
More Encouraging News for Litecoin Enthusiasts
SegWit is not the only positive development that has had an impact on Litecoin prices. Charlie Lee, the creator of Litecoin, left Coinbase to focus on developing this altcoin full-time. This has encouraged more investors to consider this altcoin, given that Charlie Lee’s presence could serve as the basis to strengthen the core team of developers needed to reassure some investors.
Higher Demand in Asia
Because of these developments, Litecoin is in high demand across Asian exchanges lately. The top three LTC trading platforms are Bithumb, OKCoin.cn, and Poloniex. Moreover, Litecoin ATMs are starting to pop-up and hardware wallets have integrated Litecoin storage options, which increases the network effect and liquidity.
Litecoin’s All-Time High Compared to Other Altcoins
Increased liquidity, increased desirability due to SegWit, a stronger development team and more network effects are the key variables underpinning a surge in demand for Litecoin. Other altcoins including bitcoin, have broken their previous all-time highs this year due to some of the same variables. Bitcoin and Ether both reached new all-time highs this year.
Litecoin vs Bitcoin
They are both off those new all-time highs now, and not as close to them as Litecoin is. Bitcoin reached its record on May 2017, when it almost hit a value of $3000. Much like Litecoin, the spike in demand in Asia – Japan with the new regulatory measures – as well as greater acceptance among mainstream investors, buoyed bitcoin. But the debates over transaction issues and uncertainty pending BIP148 are keeping the price of bitcoin 10% or more below its all-time high. Litecoin is currently less than 10% below its all-time high, and it seems like it could easily establish a new record soon.
Litecoin vs Ether
In this period, Ethereum also reached a new all-time high above $400. In this case the reason could be the growing number of ICOs organized in the Ethereum environment and the increasing media coverage, but also increased demand from Japan. Ether however, has since fallen and is around 40% below its all-time high. With investors worried about a possible ICO bubble, it seems that Ether will not be able to surpass its all-time high once again this year, unlike Litecoin.
Litecoin vs Dash
The only other prominent coin that has seen increased demand, more integration with hardware wallets and increased network effect, while setting and breaking all-time highs multiple times this year, is Dash. Nevertheless, in terms of market cap, liquidity and degree of network penetration, Dash is way behind Litecoin still. This leads us to believe that Litecoin might become the altcoin of the year in terms of growth in every direction and not only price-wise. Nevertheless, cryptocurrency markets are quite unpredictable, so we will probably have to reevaluate that statement a few times over before the year ends. With that said, Litecoin’s growth is surprising and encouragingly solid.