By Investing.com

03 January 2018

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Bitcoin’s dominance of the cryptocurrency market has fallen to its lowest ever level due to growing interest in alternative digital currencies.

On Tuesday, bitcoin’s market capitalization was $231.7 billion, around 36% of the total value of all cryptocurrencies, its lowest ever market share. At the start of 2017, its market share stood at over 80%.

The digital currency had risen around twentyfold since the start of 2017, climbing from less than $1,000 to as high as $19,891 on 17 December on Bitfinex and to more than $20,000 on other exchanges.

However, it has posted heavy declines since, falling as low as $10,718 on December 22, before rebounding to over $13,000.

Bitcoin was trading at $13,557.00 by 08:06 AM ET (01:06 GMT) on the Bitfinex exchange, after touching a low of $12,810.00 earlier.

While bitcoin investors believe the decline was a natural correction after a breath-taking rise in 2017 there have been warnings of an asset bubble from market regulators and central banks.

In late December, Morgan Stanley analysts warned that the real value of bitcoin could “be zero.”

Researchers noted that if bitcoin is not accepted as a rival to the U.S. dollar and other fiat currencies, then it is literally worth nothing.

Ripple, the second most valuable cryptocurrency by market cap after bitcoin, was trading at $2.08 on the Poloniex exchange after touching a record high of $2.39 on Saturday.

Ripple’s market cap rose more than 50% on Friday. Its market value continued to climb over the weekend, peaking at over $100 billion, knocking Ethereum into third place after bitcoin, with a market cap of $85 billion.

Ripple rose in value by more than 32,000% over the course of 2017. It began the year trading at around $0.006 and ended at $1.98.

Ripple’s gains in 2017 outstripped the gains of Ethereum and bitcoin, which rose by roughly 9,000% and 1,400%, respectively.

 

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This article was originally published at Investing.com.