The past few months have not been kind to numerous investment products, cryptocurrencies being one of them. Significant turbulence has been brewing in the crypto space since 2022, as evident by subsequent crashes and short pullbacks of substantial coins. Fears of rising interest rates, high inflation, and the recent Russia-Ukraine war tensions are the primary reasons for choppy markets. Investors are getting confused between risk-off and risk-on investments.
Nonetheless, the $2 trillion crypto market with its widespread craze cannot disintegrate quickly. Instead, it is likely to boom in the long-term due to the imminent market correction phase, continuous blockchain technology improvements, and significant in-progress crypto projects. Moreover, the return rates of various crypto assets have remained exceptional in the past few years, grabbing the interest of passionate investors. There are millions of searches on “the best crypto to invest in 2022”. Here is a list of the top 10 cryptocurrencies to invest in 2022 if you want to become a part of the next crypto spring.
Top 10 Cryptocurrencies to Invest in 2022
Known as the original cryptocurrency, Bitcoin was the first crypto introduced in 2009 by Satoshi Nakamoto. It is a decentralized virtual currency managed by a network of thousands of computers (nodes) without interference from any intermediary party.
To mention the working framework of Bitcoin: all BTC transactions are recorded in a public distributed ledger (blockchain), which cannot be altered or reversed, strengthening its security infrastructure. The network integrates a “proof-of-work” consensus mechanism – according to which all transactions are verified or added (mined) only after the solution of complex computational puzzles.
Bitcoin has always been the top investment choice of crypto enthusiasts. Bitcoin price was under $1000 in 2017, is now trading around $40,000, showing an unprecedented growth rate of approx.—4,000%. Moreover, the coin has proven itself to be resilient against massive sell-offs by time and again.
To cite one example, not too far back in July 2021, Bitcoin’s price plummeted to near $30,000 from its March 2021 high (~$60,000). But in the next three months, it gradually regained its value and touched a new all-time high during November 2021 (~$69,000). At the time of writing, the coin is again hovering around $40,000, almost 46% down from its November record high.
This scenario tells us that now is a good time to invest in this currency. If high volatility does not scare you off, you can extract substantial gains from Bitcoin during its expected next bullish cycle (caution: keep in mind that no investment is without risk). Moreover, investing a small fraction in Bitcoin could be a good option for long-term investors. Since its inception, the ROI has been unmatched and massively higher than the other coins.
Unlike most digital coins, Ethereum is more than a simple cryptocurrency and medium of exchange. Instead, it is a central block of the decentralized Ethereum network, which empowers smart contracts, NFTs, and other decentralized applications without the involvement of central authorities, brokers, and banks. The currency, ETH, is used to process various financial transactions, exchange assets, acquire loans and execute smart contracts on the Ethereum network.
Besides being a “store of value currency,” ETH derives its value from being the transactional medium of Ethereum blockchain, built to support the Decentralized Finance (DeFi) technology.
One key issue of the Ethereum network has long been a turn-off for investors, i.e., its high gas fees. However, the developers have announced to clear this problem with the energy-adapted Ethereum 2.0 network launch.
That being said, ETH is worth investing in as its parent network offers various services. The coin’s demand might expand with an increasing number of Ethereum based apps. It is reported that Ethereum’s transaction fees are also undergoing a gradual reduction. Moreover, a bullish outburst might be horizon with the network’s merging to the new Ethereum 2.0 protocol. The currency (ETH) was trading around $100 in mid-2017 but is now priced above $2500, exhibiting a majestic growth rate of approximately 2,500%.
3. Terra (LUNA)
Launched by Terraform Labs in 2018, Terra blockchain integrates a decentralized finance system (DeFi) that includes two types of coins; stablecoins like UST and LUNA. The two currencies work congruently to maintain the Terra ecosystem and its supply and demand dynamics. LUNA is burned to mint more Terra stablecoins when their value rises relative to the base currency, whereas more stablecoins are burned to mint LUNA when the value of stablecoins declines.
Terra’s DeFi ecosystem is known to be the second-largest after the Ethereum network and is evolving to become a significant Ethereum competitor. LUNA, its native coin, stands as an acceptable investment option with its Columbus-5 mainnet upgrade and energy-efficient proof-of-stake model. Though the currency has not been immune to crashes intrinsic to most cryptocurrencies, it has remained bullish in the past year.
Terra (LUNA) has shown tremendous growth of more than 10,000% within just one year, grabbing a top place among the top 10 cryptocurrencies. Its price was below $1 at the start of 2021 is now flickering around a solid $90.
4. Solana (SOL)
Popular as an Ethereum rival, Solana is an open-source, high-speed blockchain that supports Decentralized Finance (DeFi) projects, including decentralized applications (DApps), smart contracts, and NFTs. This blockchain integrates a hybrid-consensus protocol that combines the proof-of-stake model with a unique proof-of-history mechanism. Solana can process transactions more swiftly than any other blockchain, i.e., massive 65,000 transactions per second without any scaling solution than Ethereum’s 15 TPS.
SOL is the native token of this network used for staking and as a medium of exchange. Last year was magnificent for SOL as it established a place among the top-traded cryptocurrencies. The coin was ranked around 120th at the start of 2021 but now stands at 9th place according to total market capitalization.
Solana network has high potential as a DeFi technology contributor and a fast processor of transactions. SOL, its utility coin, trading around $2 at the beginning of 2021, peaked at $258 during November 2021, showing an explosive growth rate of 12,500%.
Introduced in 2020 by Ava Labs, Avalanche is a blockchain that powers smart contracts and offers blazingly fast processing speeds measured by time-to-finality. Avalanche is also one of the Ethereum competitors that incorporates the DeFi technology with low fees and swift transaction speed. The Avalanche network involves three interlinked blockchains. They perform together to maintain the platform’s efficiency without compromising speed, stability and security.
AVAX is the native token of the Avalanche ecosystem, used as a medium of exchange and for staking. It is a good investment option due to its parent network’s solid operational infrastructure, blockchain interoperability, scalability, and eco-friendly design. AVAX’s price was around $4 at the start of 2021, but it gained 2,850% in value by the end of the year, making it among the top 10 cryptocurrencies to invest in by market capitalization. At the time of writing, the coin is trading at $70, 1750% above its inception price.
Binance coin is the native token of Binance, the most popular and largest cryptocurrency exchange. BNB was released as an ERC-20 token in 2017; however, it was shifted to the newly announced Binance Smart Chain in 2020, a smart-contract-based blockchain that facilitates DeFi projects. BNB coin is used to pay transaction fees on the Binance Smart chain, participate in token sales, and exchange it for other cryptocurrencies.
Last year was remarkable for BNB as it further expanded its scope, making a place among the top five cryptocurrencies according to market capitalization. In 2017, BNB was launched with a price below $1, which has soared to above $370, demonstrating an overall growth rate of 370,000%. Although the coin has shed its value since the start of 2022, it is most likely to continue its bullish momentum due to its solid fundamentals and versatile smart contracts-based blockchain.
7. XRP (XRP)
XRP is a digital asset built on the XRP Ledger – an open-source blockchain that can process transactions in under 5 seconds. It is a native cryptocurrency of Ripple, a cross-border payment network with minimal fees designed to serve global financial institutions. XRP facilitates the activities on the Ripple network by financing the transactions and acting as a bridge for fiat currencies exchange. You can also take advantage of XRP by storing it for investment purposes and exchanging it with other cryptocurrencies.
XRP is a reasonable investment option due to Ripple’s wide adoption among major institutional parties; for instance, many major banks like “Axis” use Ripple as their payment network. Moreover, Ripple maintains a low transaction fee of only 0.0001 XRP (less than a cent) with a significantly fast verification/settlement speed.
Resultantly, the network holds the potential to become a mainstream global payment system that could push XRP’s value to unparalleled highs. When launched in 2013, the coin’s price was approximately $0.003. At the time of writing, XRP is trading around $0.75, indicating an exceptional growth percentage of 25,000% from the inception price.
USDT is a coin offering stability in the highly-volatile crypto space. Launched by a company with the same name, Tether is a stablecoin or stable cryptocurrency pegged by the US dollar. Initially, it was developed to work on Bitcoin’s Omni blockchain but was later refurbished to operate on various other blockchains, including Ethereum, Tron, Algorand, etc.
The coin’s price is maintained identical to USD by preserving a collection of treasury bills, cash, repo notes, or fiduciary deposits in reserves with a value (in USD) equal to the total USDT in circulation. Sometimes, a difference of 1 or 2 cents may appear in USDT’s importance due to fluctuating liquidity and supply/demand.
USDT is a viable option for individuals who want to take advantage of the decentralized nature of cryptocurrencies but with stable pricing. Tether has established its worth due to its comprehensive utilization in daily purchases and global money transfers. It is noteworthy that although the coin cannot gain much value in itself, various platforms offer high-interest rates for storing USDT compared to traditional banks. It makes USDT a haven for risk-averse investors who do not feel comfortable with the extreme volatility of cryptocurrencies.
Polkadot is a multi-chain protocol that allows the cross-blockchain transfer of data, assets, or tokens, establishing true interoperability of blockchains. This open-source project serves as a foundation of a decentralized web of blockchains known as Web3. A platform where developers can create and control various applications, services, or any form of data. Moreover, Polkadot ensures the governance sovereignty of all chains but maintains security for all.
DOT is the native token of Polkadot, which is used for three primary purposes, including the network’s governance, staking, and bonding of new parachains. Polkadot has formed partnerships with reputable entities and integrates various features that highlight its potential. It offers a secure connection between blockchains, solving the interoperability problem. Additionally, the protocol utilizes sharding to enact scalability, high transaction speed, and low fees.
DOT was trading around $5 at the start of 2021, which is now priced at approximately $17, manifesting a growth rate of 340%.
10. Litecoin (LTC)
Litecoin was introduced in 2011 following the footsteps of Bitcoin. This crypto operates on an open-source, decentralized blockchain similar to the Bitcoin protocol; however, it differs in some aspects. To name some, Litecoin has a significantly larger supply than Bitcoin and utilizes a different hashing algorithm. Moreover, the block transaction times are faster on the Litecoin network (2.5 minutes) with lower transaction costs.
Litecoin’s expanding adoption and increased user-cases are grabbing the attention of investors who prefer cryptocurrencies with real-life uses. By the end of 2021, more than 3000 merchants were accepting Litecoin as a payment option. In addition, Litecoin’s newly launched OmniLite, a stablecoin creation platform, might encourage more developers to utilize LTC blockchain to enjoy swift transactions and lower fees.
At the beginning of 2017, the LTC price was approx. $4. At the time of writing, the coin is wavering around $100, showing a percentage increase of 2500% from the 2017 price.
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I hope you would find this article, the top 10 cryptocurrencies to invest in 2022 useful.