2017 Markets Performance in Retrospect: Cryptocurrencies Vrs Stocks

2017 was generally a good year for money market assets and investment instruments but their performances pale in comparison to that of crypto-assets.

The top performing stock market for the year 2017 was Zimbabwe with a 117.7% advance (that is if the performance of Venezuela is excluded – due to rampant/hyper inflation). Comparing Zimbabwe’s stock market performance with that of top coin Ripple, there is a significant gap. Ripple witnessed an emphatic gain of 35,515% for the year under review as its price moved from $0.0065 as of 31st December, 2016 to a value of $2.25 by 31st December, 2017.

The table below shows that top performing stock markets for the year 2017 were usually domiciled in less developed and emerging stock markets like Mongolia which witnessed an appreciation of 68.9%, Argentina with an increase of 77.7% and Ghana with a figure of 52.69%.

Stock performances in developed markets such as Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index recorded an increase of 36% in returns and this was followed by India’s BSE Sensex 30 which went up by 27.9%. The third best performing major stock was the S&P 500 (SPX) which appreciated by 19.4% – the SPX has witnessed impressive performances over the last thirteen months.

It should be noted that despite 2017 being a good year for money markets, not all markets were bullish. Some did not record any significant upward adjustments and others recorded negative movements. The least performing market for 2017 was the Sarajeko Stock Exchange with a negative percentage of 18.5. The Qatar exchange came in second in non-performing stock exchanges of 2017. It is believed that the economic blockade against the country by its fellow regional neighbors might have played a major role in this. The Qatar Exchange recorded a loss of 18.3% as the Karachi Exchange also recorded a loss of 15.3%

Looking at the chart below, it shows the performances of the top five cryptocurrencies against the US Dollar for the year 2017. The graph is a simple summary of the performances of these five coins – it excludes so many other details.

The graph shows that the cryptocurrencies therein represented started an accelerated value appreciation in the latter parts of the year. Ripple (XRP/USD) came a tadbit late to the rally party and it sure did show teeth within such a short period. Ripple appreciated by 700% in the month of December alone! Ripple which is a digital asset purposely developed to facilitate global payment by banks and financial institutions has had siginficant value appreciation catalyzed by increased demand in the Korean market.

Dash made impressive strides within the year under review – the digital currency broke out of its 32 month low to new highs in 2017. It recorded over 10,000% appreciation in value over the past 10 months, attaining high value of about $1,600.

Ethereum (ETH/USD) came in a close third as one of the top performing cryptos for 2017. Recording an impressive percentage performance of over 9000%, the currency was valued at $760 by the close of 31st December, 2017. ETH has chalked some impressive strides in the early parts of January, 2018 with new highs of over $1000.

Litecoin (LTC/USD) started its bullish run in the latter parts of the year with an astronomical increase in its price value between late November and early December when it moved from a figure of about $80 to an all time high figure of over $300.

The granddad of contemporary cryptocurrencies, Bitcoin was however the 6th best performer on the market. Bitcoin was up 2000% in 2017 as it almost touched $20,000 in mid December. Bitcoin has actually seen a steady rise in its value all year and market analysts predict that a similar trend is to be expected in 2018. Some have gone further to state that Bitcoin will cross the $35,000 point sometime within the year.