The Top 10 Cryptocurrencies for 2018 (3 Risky, 3 Safe, 3 Medium, and 1 Winner)
With the crypto markets in a major correction there are buying opportunities everywhere. The majority of coins purchased at these prices will rebound greatly in the coming months. However, looking beyond that, where will crypto go by the end of 2018? This article will discuss the top ten coins to consider as long-term plays for the entirety of 2018.
2018 in a Glance
The beginning of 2018 was marked by a major correction to the price of bitcoin and the general cryptocurrency markets. Corrections follow major bull rallies which is what the population experienced to close out 2018. Following corrections are the infamous rebounds. The crypto markets are notorious for the size of corrections and their corresponding rebounds. The larger the correction, the greater the rebound. With the markets having just suffered one of the greatest corrections in years the upcoming rebound should be of equally grand proportions. With such an important rebound coming up, what ten coins can investors take advantage of through both the rebound and the remainder of 2018?
There are coins deemed relatively safe in comparison to others while many are very high-risk. It is important for each investor to gauge their level of risk before entering the cryptosphere. Crypto is one of the highest risk investments as is, so by choosing a high-risk investment, in a high-risk space, the investment borders gambling. However, the higher the risk, generally the higher the return. There is usually a balance corresponding between risk and reward, even in the cryptocurrency markets. 2017 clearly had market adoption on a major scale while the beginning of 2018 was pot marked with FUD.
The FUD will soon subside, and as the rebound takes place investors will rush back into the crypto space, having missed the best opportunity for coin shopping. The King has highlighted what he feels are low-risk, high-risk, and medium-risk plays for the remainder of 2018, and one winner!
Safe Plays: XRP, ETH, and BTC
The King was either going to discuss the “Safe Plays” or the “Riskiest Plays” first. Given how volatile markets have been recently, let’s stick to the “Safe” ones for now. This market is one of the most volatile an investor can choose to take place in so a “safer” coin is always a good option. The top three safe plays for 2018 are; XRP, ETH, and BTC.
Most would have expected Bitcoin (BTC) to be the first coin mentioned on this list. Although the author thinks BTC has an important role in the crypto world, the author thinks ripple (XRP) has the ability to increase in value the most without the risk trade off associated with BTC. XRP has already penetrated the financial markets and has partnerships with American Express (AMEX), Banco Santander, SBI International, and Money Gram. Partnerships of that caliber provide XRP access to major financial banks and financial service providers across the globe. Regardless of what happens with the greater crypto markets, XRP has solidified itself based on; its ability to seamlessly transfer any amount of money from one continent to the other, with complete transparency, in seconds, all for a few dollars.
Exchanges have been targeting XRP as new additions with BitOasis (the Coinbase of UAE and North Africa) being the most recent addition. BitOasis only has two other coins traded (BTC and ETH), adding XRP making it the third. The King expects other major exchanges like Coinbase to follow suit with XRP being one of the likely additions in the first quarter of 2018. The rumors that Coinbase may have added XRP in January spiked the price of XRP over $3.00 and since it has corrected to under $1.00. This is a prime opportunity for some Ripple shopping. On February 5, 2018, XRP is trading at $0.63 making it 80 percent cheaper than it was on January 4, 2018. In one month XRP has shed 80 percent of its total market cap while the rest of the market decreased by 46 percent on average.
With XRP having corrected 80 percent compared to the total market’s correction of 46 percent we notice an almost 90 percent greater correction by XRP. XRP has had nothing but positive news the entire month of January and February with institutions basing their trading pairs off of XRP, it being added to exchanges, and major partnership announcements. XRP should not have fallen further than the market corrected, yet it did. 2018 should be the year of the XRP recovery and complete adoption to revolutionize the sending of any asset. Gold, for example, could be spot price converted to XRP and sent from location A to location B without ever having to move the physical gold. The XRP arrive in seconds and can be converted to the local currency to be used to purchase gold (if desired). With partnerships that are the best in crypto and a price that overreacted to the market correction, XRP is a safe choice for a top gainer for 2018.
Ethereum wins for market adoption and penetration in the ICO sector. Most ICOs are being released as ERC-20 tokens and many (including myself) speculate regarding which coin will break into ETH’s market penetration, and the reality is no one knows for sure. What is known is that ETH is already being used as the primary currency for ICOs and most new ICOs are being released on the ERC-20 token platform. This makes ETH a very safe play. ETH survived most of the market correction of the last two months unphased but unfortunately has taken a dip the past few weeks. The King expects ETH to recover from this minor correction and continue being one of the leaders for 2018. ETH will not be the top gainer in 2018, but it is a safe play when compared to the extreme volatility the markets have faced this prior two months.
Other important coins like NEO, ICX, STRAT, and a few others have begun releasing their ICO platforms and the attempts to dethrone ETH continue. However, little headway has been made by any coin besides NEO, and NEO just suffered a great set back in China due to legislation. ETH looks like it will continue to be the clear number one contender for the top spot for ICO releases for the near future and remainder of 2018. With almost complete market adoption ETH is one of the few cryptocurrencies that is trusted in the space even with all the regular FUD surrounding many coins. Many countries are cracking down on ICO policies, and this may be one of the few factors impacting ETH’s continued uptrend in price. However, as long as ICOs continue to be launched, and ETH is the primary platform for doing so, they will remain the safest ICO related coin in the cryptocurrency space for 2018.
Ok, fine! Yes, bitcoin made the “Safe Play” list but reluctantly so! The reason BTC is here is because Tether has too many reasons to believe they don’t have the correct number of U.S. Dollars in trust and their price wouldn’t necessarily appreciate even if they did. Bitcoin has been the currency most trading pairs exist under, has the longest history in blockchain, and was the original cryptocurrency. Plus, a factor most developers forget is brand recognition. BTC has the best brand recognition in the entire crypto space. If you approach random people and ask them about cryptocurrency, most responses are, “You mean like BTC?” To the average individual who is not trading in this space, the name is still BTC. To the traders and investors in this space, BTC is the name that drew us all in. BTC should remain the “brand” in crypto for many years to come making it a very safe play in 2018.
Bitcoin was pushing $20,000 per coin in December 2017 before a correction of epic proportions drove the price to $6,750 on February 5. The drop resulted in a 60+ percent decline in total market cap and a leading indicator of the market’s overall condition in the short term. BTC and the rest of the crypto markets corrected heavily leaving BTC, the brand leader, and largest market cap coin severely depressed in value. If you doubted cryptocurrency in 2008, it was a reasonable stance given the lack of knowledge surrounding blockchain. If you doubt blockchain now, it’s because you do not understand it. For those that understand it and understand its societal impact, it is clearly revolutionary, which is why there is so much pushback in the form of FUD from governments and news services. BTC started the financial revolution in 2008, and the King fully expects it to see the revolution through as its leader. $100,000 may be a high estimate for 2018, but BTC should easily approach new ATHs long before the end of 2018.
Medium Risk: LTC, NEO, and ICX
Safe plays are just that; they are the safest choices in the market with the lowest risk. The safe plays should all provide fantastic returns from 2018 lows we were at. An ample rebound will follow this substantial correction and being diversified between low risk, medium risk, and high-risk coins is never a bad idea. Diversification is key, in all investments. Regarding medium-risk coins the King has selected three: LTC, NEO, and ICX.
The King has written more than once on NEO, and tentatively covered XLM in the past. However, litecoin (LTC), being the major player it is has managed to fly under the radar the past few months. Since LTC’s founder, Charlie Lee, sold his portion of LTCs the price has plummeted, even though he has promised to continue working on the LTC project full time. Regardless, it did not instill faith in the general public to have the coin founder cashing in on LTC at its absolute all-time high. LTC had reached highs over $350, December 17, 2017 and has since fallen to under $125 as of February 5, 2018. This is an astronomical price decline that basically mimics the market’s correction.
However, unlike the general market, LTC has had very important news for the week beginning February 5. Most may not have even seen the positive news sprinkled among the masses of FUD that have been plaguing the markets for two months. Litepay is coming out this week! This will revolutionize the ability for shops around the world to accept cryptocurrencies, specifically LTC, as early as this week. These are the type of developments that have the ability to change entire marketplaces, secure blockchain transactions, complete transparency, and the ability to avoid centralized banking if you chose. LTC is not the safest play for 2018, but when compared to many other coins it has one of the best teams (if not the best) and has made huge strides in quarter one, which have largely gone unnoticed because of the entire market correction.
With Litepay on the horizon (literally days away) and the rebound that follows all major corrections soon to come, LTC should be able to take complete advantage of the positioning it is putting itself in for 2018. Litepay may become the new “PayPal” or “Venmo” for retailers, and if it is able to acquire that type of market penetration, LTC can easily change from a medium-risk play to a low-risk play with exceptionally high returns. LTC was the “loser” on Coinbase the last two months, but that is about to change dramatically.
ICX has long been a favorite coin of the Kings. They are the ‘Korean Ethereum,’ and unlike ETH their mainnet just went live January 24, 2018. ICX also just concluded their first major conference in Seoul, South Korea. They’ve chosen to be based out of a country that did the opposite of what China did. Instead of banning cryptos, they are regulating them. South Korean traders just came back online, and their baby ICX should respond accordingly. This market correction has impacted most coins dramatically, and following the ICX conference on January 31, 2018, the price has declined more than 50 percent for no apparent reason. ICX is based out of a jurisdiction that approves of crypto in a very technologically advanced country (South Korea).
Today is the perfect opportunity to enter the ICX market as it has fallen 50 percent in a week solely due to market conditions. ICX would be a low-risk play except because it is approximately nine months behind ETH regarding a market adoption timeline. ICX is headed by a very skilled team that is providing blockchain solutions to hospitals, banks, and universities. ICX’s decentralized applications (DApps) can be used by a variety of institutions worldwide and having just had a successful mainnet launch, and their first major conference has set the stage for a major 2018. ICX should capitalize on the market rebound but also on South Korea’s traders coming back online. ICX is the darling of a country that has decided to regulate crypto, making it a strong play for 2018 and further future development.
NEO: NEO (formerly AntShares)
NEO is a favorite play of the Kings as it was recently hit hardest with FUD. China which is where NEO was originally based out of was known there as the ‘Chinese Ethereum.’ NEO is a platform to launch ICOs very similar to ETH. Some of their ICOs have specialized in virtual reality and artificial intelligence. This technology is as cutting edge as it comes and they are trying to incorporate it into the blockchain. NEO would have been in the “Safe Play” category had this article been written a week ago which solely means your expected return should be increased. The China ban from February 4, 2018, had a dramatic impact on NEO, and the upcoming rebound should reflect in the recovery.
NEO just sponsored NEO DevCon which now was clearly an even better idea than had previously been anticipated. NEO has been known very well in the Asian hemisphere but has been somewhat absent from U.S. conferences. By hosting NEO DevCon in San Francisco, NEO was able to solidify their footprint in countries that are taking the route of regulation instead of an outright ban. With a market cap of $4.5 billion and a coin value of $67 per coin, this is a great coin that pays monthly dividends that grow as the NEO network releases more tokens to be transacted with upon their ever-growing blockchain. Prior to the China ban, NEO would have been ranked “safe,” however in crypto, the world can change in one day. Now as a moderate-risk play NEO should expect to yield higher than expected returns as it re-approaches the $200 level it flirted with in January.
High Risk: DRGN, TNC, and BTCP
The highest risk coins were all the craze in the middle of the bull market. The small- and micro-cap coins that people were hoping would afford them the ability to buy Lambos in a few weeks! The dreams were as rampant as the scams. However, this correction has taught all a very valuable lesson. Understand the coins you are transacting in, and understand the markets you are trading in. Take some risks, but never should they all be classified as “High Risk.” The benefit of the higher risk, smaller market cap coins, are they will afford the highest returns during the rebound and proceeding bull run. These three high-risk coins include; DRGN, TNC, and BTCP.
The King thinks DRGN is more borderline than “High Risk.” However, Dragonchain (DRGN) is a blockchain based enterprise solution that seeks to simplify the process of incorporating blockchain tech for new and existing businesses. DRGN was originally a Disney project setting out to incorporate blockchain for businesses. The team’s purpose was to make it simple for developers to release blockchain-based apps using languages coders are familiar with (Java or Python). The DRGN ICO ended at $.07 per coin far below the current trading price of $1.30. However, this $1.30 is far below the $4 that was breached during the January highs. In 2018 DRGN has already opened their incubator platform with ICOs clearly interested in doing what they can do be a part of Disney’s blockchain project.
DRGN is in the infancy of its existence compared to many other cryptocurrencies and because of this is in the higher risk category. Their future outlook is incredibly strong, and their team is one built by developers from Disney (yes, that Disney). DRGN should be a huge gainer in 2018, in January alone it was trading 75 percent higher than it current is as of Tuesday, February 6, 2018. The DRGN incubator platform was recently launched, and the website is available for viewing as more ICOs become available. DRGN should be one of the coins that have the greatest bounce backs during the rebound as it is the brainchild of Disney. Has an incredible team supporting them. Plus, their relatively small market cap, $330 million, provides them plenty of opportunities to grow. DRGN should see its most successful year in 2018 being one of the least risky, high-risk plays.
Trinity Network Credit: TNC
The Trinity Network Credit (TNC) token was the Moonshot this prior week. However, being a moonshot, it demonstrated a strong potential to succeed in the coming eleven months. TNC has a market cap of approximately $65 million with a coin value of roughly $0.195. TNC is a coin that will live and die by the side of NEO. TNC is the scaling solution for when NEO outgrows its current platform. However, if NEO never takes off like ETH, then TNC will fade into oblivion, along with NEO. However, considering ETH was one of the top performers last year and ICO releasing coins have been the hottest craze NEO should be able to piggyback off ETH’s recent success. Capturing any piece of ETH’s market share would create a situation where NEO may need a scaling solution very soon. That solution is TNC.
TNC tokens serve the purpose of a utility token literally transporting NEP-5 (NEO) based assets from one wallet to another. TNC is unique in their scaling solution involves using state channels and off-chain scaling schemes. TNC is the equivalent of Stellar Lumens (XLM) or Raiden Network Token (RDN) but for the NEO blockchain. Both RDN and XLM have had huge successes in 2017 which is why if NEO builds on any of ETH’s momentum TNC will be the significant gainer most will be talking about in 2018. TNC is a higher risk play as its success is directly connected to NEO’s growth rate. NEO is based out of, China, a country that has recently placed an all-out ban on crypto. TNC is one for the gamblers, but if it pays off, you will be sitting on the moon in your Lambo.
Bitcoin Private: BTCP
This is the “High Risk” section, so it is time to list the highest risk play for 2018. Bitcoin Private (BTCP) is an upcoming fork of BTC and ZCL. BTC has the best “branding” in cryptocurrency. Bitcoin is still the most recognized name in the crypto world even if you believe it is no longer the best technology. To improve the technology BTC continuously goes through forks. Forks should not be something investors are scared of. ETH was originally a fork of ETH Classic. Yet, ETH today is worth exponentially more than ETH Classic. BTC similarly will continue to undergo forks (like Bitcoin Cash) resulting in improving the BTC blockchain are creating a separate blockchain entirely. Bitcoin Cash helped speed up BTC transaction times while decreasing the cost to transact. The newest fork BTCP will do all of the things Bitcoin Cash was able to do with its fork but add the privacy element.
Bitcoin Private (BTCP) intends to be the first (and only) Bitcoin-branded privacy coin. Some would argue what does the crypto world need with one more privacy coin. Those individuals don’t understand branding. That would be like saying what does the fashion world need with one more Louis Vuitton handbag. Yes, there are plenty of great other bags out there. However, people who trust the brand, BTC, will seek out the type of coin in its repertoire they prefer. If an individual wants a privacy coin and the options are three they’ve never heard of or Bitcoin Private, want to guess what they are going to choose?
People grow comfortable with brands and go back to them time and time again. BTCP is “High Risk” because being a fork coming February 28; the coin isn’t even in existence yet. However, the King believes by the end of 2018 BTCP will rival the market cap of the top privacy coins and likely be the most expensive fork of BTC to date. The only way to attain BTCP is to own bitcoin or zclassic (ZCL) prior to the fork date of February 28. This limited supply of coins under the Bitcoin branding will result in a new highly sought after privacy coin. BTCP is the King’s favorite, high-risk play for 2018 as it has the potential to yield unfathomable returns. 1 ZCL currently is $70. The ratio of ZCL to BTCP is 1:1. If BTCP approaches the $1,400 BCH was valued at earlier this year by the end of 2018, this will yield a return of 2,000 percent. Making twenty times your investment in under one year is normally a pipe dream. Here is a real possibility of attaining those returns.
Conclusion: Diversification No Matter What
Volatility is everywhere so it is very important to stay diversified and ensure the level of risk tolerance of the individual is known prior to entering the crypto markets. Crypto is not for everyone as there are moments you will feel like the King and other moments you will be scanning through a portfolio of red for no other reason besides more FUD. Here are nine coins ranked from “Safe” to higher “Risk,” that should provide the balanced portfolio any individual wanting to solely buy and HODL long term can employ. It is always recommended to monitor your investments, but it is understandable some people wish to purchase and let be. All of these coins can be viewed as longer-term holds. There will be volatility that provides opportunities to buy and sell, but the technology and market adoption provide these coins the ability to be held through 2018 with the expectation the majority if not all will trend North as they become more mainstream.
The Winner: BTC
Honestly, why fix what is not broken? Bitcoin was the original. BTC was slow and expensive and honestly was at the point of needing a replacement. However, forks and updates sped up transaction speed greatly and decreased transaction costs in the last few months. BTC is back to being a top competitor in the crypto space for more than a store of wealth, and for more than the “brand.” Having dropped over 60 percent from its all-time high in December BTC can easily see 200 percent returns before being back to December’s high. 200 percent gains from a price of $6,000 would put BTC back at $18,000 far below what most experts expect BTC to end 2018 at. In the finance world, most would balk at the idea of the safest investment returning over 200 percent. Crypto is not the finance world, and the King has confidence in BTC and crypto as a whole. When there is blood in the streets, you accumulate. Time to accumulate the safest play, BTC all the way to the riskiest BTCP.
To read the King’s prior articles, to find out which ICOs he currently recommends, or to get in contact directly with the King, you can on Twitter (@JbtheCryptoKing) or Reddit (ICO updates and Daily Reports).