The term altseason has been popular ever since the rise of altcoins and the initial coin offering (ICO) boom of 2017. Essentially, altseason is when altcoins rally relative to Bitcoin, and it can be an exciting time since numerous different altcoins can skyrocket in value all at once, leading to big profits. Due to how exciting altseason is for crypto traders, one of the most common question which is asked is ‘when’s altseason?’, and usually if altcoin prices rise even a little, at least a few crypto traders will use social media to declare that altseason is here.
Unfortunately for everyone who loves altseason, it appears that altseason is permanently over and that a permanent Bitcoin-season has arrived, as will be explained in depth in this article.
Dominance Percentage Data Proves That There’s Been No Altseason in Over Two Years
First off, Bitcoin dominance percentage data proves that altseason is not occurring anymore. In-fact, the last altseason was during April-May 2018, which was over two years ago.
The Bitcoin dominance percentage is the Bitcoin market cap divided by the total crypto market cap. If the Bitcoin dominance percentage drops significantly, then that is a sign that altseason is underway. On the other hand, if the Bitcoin dominance percentage rises significantly, then Bitcoin-season is underway. A chart of the Bitcoin dominance percentage (orange filled line) since 2013 can be viewed below.
Chart courtesy of CoinMarketCap
The first altseason occurred from February through June 2017, and this coincided with the rise of Ethereum, which is the filled-in purple line. Bitcoin’s dominance percentage crashed from 86% to just above 30%, and briefly, Ethereum almost overtook the Bitcoin dominance percentage.
After that from June through December 2017, there was a definitive Bitcoin-season, with Bitcoin’s dominance percentage surging back to over 63%. Then altseason came back in force from December 2017 through January 2018, and Bitcoin’s dominance percentage cratered back to 30%.
Then the final altseason occurred in April through May 2018, and it was much weaker than the first two altseasons with the Bitcoin dominance percentage only dropping 10%.
Since then Bitcoin’s dominance percentage steadily rose to over 50% by August 2018, before surging to 70% in September 2019 and then plateauing through the present day.
The important thing to note is that the Bitcoin dominance percentage hasn’t seen any sharp declines over the past two years, and if it does decline it is only by a handful of percentage points over the course of many months. Thus, this data is definitive proof that there’s been no altseason at all since April-May 2018, which was over two years ago.
The Reasons Why Altseason is Likely Permanently Over
In order to understand why altseason is probably never coming back, one needs to look no further than its history. The first two altseasons, which were by far the biggest, were caused by an explosion in speculation surrounding altcoins, specifically initial coin offering (ICO) cryptocurrencies. New ICO cryptos were being launched all the time, and almost all of them saw instant success and raised tons of money since investors collectively believed that ICOs were the future, and there was abundant capital flowing through the crypto space due to Bitcoin’s rally to USD 20,000.
However, this ICO speculation came crashing down in 2018 as the Bitcoin and ICO bubbles simultaneously popped. ICO cryptocurrencies rapidly lost value, causing untold numbers of investors major losses. Further, the collapse of the market revealed that many of the ICOs were misappropriating their investment money or even outright scams. Basically, ICO companies thought the crypto rally would last forever, and many of them spent more than they really had in the expectation that the crypto market would keep making them tons of money.
The nail in the coffin was government regulators in both China and the United States, who cracked down on ICOs in response to catastrophic ICO related investment losses during the 2018 bear market. Now starting or participating in an ICO is illegal in China and the United States, and this has cut off almost all of the money that was flowing into the ICO space. Further, even ICOs outside of the United States and China have been shut down, since technically if even one Chinese or American investor participates in an ICO it makes the entire ICO illegal. An example is the billions of USD Telegram ICO, which was shut down even though it was based overseas because investors from the United States participated.
Aside from ICOs being hot and volatile substances in the eyes of the law, in general, investors lost big after the 2017 ICO bubble, causing almost all crypto investors to be wary of investing even a single satoshi into ICOs.
In other words, whereas originally investors collectively thought ICOs were the future and readily dumped money into them, now investors collectively think ICOs are gray area at best and a total scam at worse, and avoid them like the plague.
Thus, the failure of the first ICO boom in 2017 and the resulting stringent ICO regulations seem to have permanently ended altseason. The silver lining is that this also means we are in the middle of a permanent Bitcoin-season, and for Bitcoiners that is certainly something to be excited about.
Image Courtesy: Pixabay