With the five-year anniversary of the Ethereum blockchain less than two weeks away, the market cap performance of ERC-20 tokens has skyrocketed to almost achieve parity with that of Ether.
Ryan Selkis, CEO of crypto analytics firm Messari, said in a July 17 newsletter that over the past two months, the market cap of all ERC-20 tokens has shot up to roughly $25.6 billion, about 49% of the total assets on the Ethereum (ETH) blockchain, $52.6 billion.
“Ether now only accounts for 51% of the value secured on the Ethereum blockchain, which is the smallest amount on a percentage basis that it’s accounted for in its history. The other 49% of the value stored on Ethereum now incentivizes economic activity beyond the maintenance and execution of the Ethereum blockchain.”
Rise in DeFi and stablecoins
According to Selkis, the growth of these tokens is primarily due to the Crypto.com token (CRO) and DeFi token Chainlink (LINK), but a surge of interest in stablecoins has also weakened Ethereum’s hold on its own blockchain.
Chainlink’s token has surged over 370% in 2020, gaining almost 80% this month to become the ninth-biggest cryptocurrency by market cap. CRO’s market cap has likewise improved, rising from $426 million in January to $2.6 billion today.
Cointelegraph reported on July 14 that the market cap of stablecoins has risen from $2.2 billion to $11 billion, while that of Bitcoin (BTC) has actually decreased 12%, from $195 billion to $171 billion. Thus the buying power of stablecoins like Tether (USDT) has markedly increased in 2020.