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From Bitcoin and Ethereum to Dogecoin and Tether, there are thousands of different cryptocurrencies, which can make it overwhelming when you’re first getting started in the world of crypto. To help you get your bearings, these are the top 10 cryptocurrencies based on their market capitalization, or the total value of all of the coins currently in circulation.
1. Bitcoin (BTC)
Market cap: Over $641 billion
Created in 2009 by someone under the pseudonym Satoshi Nakamoto, Bitcoin (BTC) is the original cryptocurrency. As with most cryptocurrencies, BTC runs on a blockchain, or a ledger logging transactions distributed across a network of thousands of computers. Because additions to the distributed ledgers must be verified by solving a cryptographic puzzle, a process called proof of work, Bitcoin is kept secure and safe from fraudsters.
Bitcoin’s price has skyrocketed as it’s become a household name. Five years ago, you could buy a Bitcoin for about $500. As of June 2021, a single Bitcoin’s price was over $32,000. That’s growth of about 6,300%.
2. Ethereum (ETH)
Market cap: Over $307 billion
Both a cryptocurrency and a blockchain platform,