News of digital currencies has been crowding the financial press for several years, yet getting a grip on what exactly “cryptocurrency” means and how to measure its success or failure is a real challenge. One way to gauge these virtual monies is to look at their face value — which varies with supply, demand and public sentiment. Here’s a list of the most expensive digital currencies, measured by their market price as of June 3.
Bitcoin, the original digital currency, has a price of $29,962.66 as of June 3. Bitcoin has been leading the pack throughout the short history of cryptocurrency, and it’s also the largest by far in terms of market cap. Derivatives of BTC, such as wrapped bitcoin, which is an Ethereum-compatible token pegged to the value of original bitcoin, have also hit the market.
PAX Gold (PAXG)
PAX gold is an Ethereum-based cryptocurrency entirely backed by gold and pegged 1:1 to the price of an ounce of gold. The currency was launched in 2019 as a way for investors to break into gold investing without being held to the minimum buy requirements imposed on commodity purchases. Each token represents a fraction of a London Good Delivery gold bar, which is stored in Brink’s vaults, according to Paxos. On June 3, coins were selling for $1,864.40. Despite its high price, PAX gold has a small market cap — just $621.97 million.
Ethereum’s price as of June 3, at $1,778.70, makes it the third most expensive distinct cryptocurrency. The Canadian-Russian programmer Vitalik Buterin was the first to envision a new, more practical cryptocurrency, which he presented in a white paper published in 2013. His ethereum coin started out at a price of $0.31 on the day of its initial offering, meaning ethereum’s value has grown 573,674% since it first began trading less than 10 years ago.
The maker coin has reached a price of $1,137.42 as of June 3, with a total market capitalization of about $1.112 billion. Maker is available for trading on a number of exchanges — including Binance, UniSwap, OKEx and Coinbase Pro. One of the youngest digital currencies, maker was launched in 2017. An interesting feature is that it works somewhat like the shares of a company in that each holder has the right to vote on the development of the coin, which is meant for use on decentralized finance platforms.
Binance Coin (BNB)
With a price of $301.17 on June 3, binance coin is the fifth most expensive cryptocurrency. Binance is the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchange, and it also supports a number of sub-projects, such as Binance Chain, Binance Smart Chain, Binance Academy and Trust Wallet, according to CoinMarketCap. Binance coin is the native token on the Binance exchange and is used throughout much of the Binance ecosystem.
What To Consider Before Investing In Cryptocurrency
While the price of a digital coin varies, sometimes drastically, from one day to the next, it’s important to also take into account market capitalization, trading volume and accessibility on the various coin exchanges when evaluating these new, digital forms of money.
Digital currency is volatile and unpredictable, and wise investors will commit only funds they can afford to lose while dabbling in this market.
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Daria Uhlig contributed to the reporting for this article.
Data is accurate as of June 3, 2022, and is subject to change.