See the full blog post with all the tables here.
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Instead of hypothetically tracking cryptos, I made an actual $1000 investment, $100 in each of the Top 10 cryptocurrencies by market cap on the 1st of January 2018. The result? The 2018 Top Ten portfolio ended the year down 85%, my $1000 worth only $150. I repeated the experiment on the 1st of January 2019 with the new 2019 Top Ten cryptos, then again in 2020. Think of the Top Ten Experiments as a lazy man’s Index Fund (no weighting or rebalancing), less technical, but hopefully still a proxy for the market as a whole – or at the very least an interesting snapshot of the 2018, 2019, and 2020 crypto space. I am trying to keep this project simple/accessible for beginners and those looking to get into crypto but maybe not quite ready to jump in yet. I try not to take sides or analyze, but rather attempt to report in a detached manner letting the numbers speak for themselves. This experiment is designed to be documentary in nature, describing a specific period in cryptocurrency history.
Buy $100 of each the Top 10 cryptocurrencies on January 2018, 2019, and 2020. Hold only. No selling. No trading. Report monthly.
Month Four – UP 42%
After a very bloody March, the 2020 Top Ten have bounced back bigly (or is it big league?). March was all red, April all green. Out of the three portfolios, the 2020 Top Ten (+42%) is the best performing for the third month in a row.
Ranking and March Winners and Losers
EOS and Binance Coin switched places, but that’s it – the rest of the 2020 Top Ten were locked in place.
April Winners – Tezos, up +76%, easily bested its peers. Second place goes to ETH, up +57% this month.
April Losers – The same two losers as the 2019 Top Ten group: Tether was outperformed by the rest of the cryptos. The second worst performance in April was turned in by Bitcoin Cash, up +15%.
For those keeping score, I also keep a tally of which coins have the most monthly wins and losses. After four months, Tether has two losses and Tezos has two wins.
Overall update – Tezos overtakes BSV for the lead and 100% are in positive territory.
Tezos (+121%) took the lead over from BSV (+115%) this month, a lead which BSV had held since the beginning of the year. Not counting Tether, the worst performing crypto, Bitcoin Cash, is still up +15% since January 2020.
Total Market Cap for the entire cryptocurrency sector:
The overall crypto market added about $63B in April 2020 and is now close to where it was in late February. It is up +31% since the beginning of the experiment in January 2020.
Bitcoin dominance (or BitDom as I like to call it) was steady in April. As of early May, there hasn’t been significant movement either way this year.
Overall return on investment since January 1st, 2020:
The 2020 Top Ten Portfolio regained $350 in April, not quite what it lost in March. After an initial $1000 investment, the 2020 Top Ten Portfolio is now worth $1,419, up about +42%. It is the best performing Top Ten Crypto Portfolio out of the three.
Here’s the month by month ROI of the 2020 Top Ten Experiment, hopefully helpful to maintain perspective and provide an overview as we go along:
Hopefully that zombie apocalypse drop in March will just be a blip this year.
So, how does the 2020 Top Ten Experiment compare to the parallel projects?
- 2018 Top Ten Experiment: down -82% (total value: $183)
- 2019 Top Ten Experiment: up about +37% (total value: $1,368)
Taken together, here’s the bottom bottom bottom line:
After a $3000 investment in the 2018, 2019, and 2020 Top Ten Cryptocurrencies, my portfolios are worth $2,969.
That’s down about -1% for the combined portfolios.
So that’s the Top Ten Crypto Index Fund Experiments snapshot. Let’s take a look at how traditional markets are doing.
Comparison to S&P 500
I’m also tracking the S&P 500 as part of my experiment to have a comparison point with other popular investments options. Stocks rebounded a bit in April, but are still down -12% since the beginning of the year.
Over the same time period, the 2020 Top Ten Crypto Portfolio is returning about +42%, now worth about $1,419.
The money I put into crypto in January 2020 would now be worth $880 had it been redirected to the S&P 500. That’s an almost $540 swing on an initial $1,000 investment.
And what if I took the same approach with the S&P 500 as I took during the first three years of the Top Ten Crypto Index Fund Experiments? Here are the figures:
- $1000 investment in S&P 500 on January 1st, 2018: +$60
- $1000 investment in S&P 500 on January 1st, 2019: +$130
- $1000 investment in S&P 500 on January 1st, 2020: -$120
Taken together, here’s the bottom bottom bottom line for a similar approach with the S&P:
After three $1,000 investments into an S&P 500 index fund in January 2018, 2019, and 2020, my portfolio would be worth $3,070.
$3,070 is up about +2% since January 2018, compared to the $2,969 value (-1%) of the combined Top Ten Crypto Experiment Portfolios.
That’s a only a 3% difference. Last month the gap was 13%.
The crypto market as a whole is up +31% since the beginning of the year compared to the 2020 Top Ten cryptos which have gained +42%. Focusing on the Top Ten 2020 coins has now beaten the overall market four months in a row.
This is noteworthy because this hasn’t been the case very often since I started these Top Ten Experiments back in January 2018. Although there are a few examples of the Top Ten strategy outperforming the overall market in the 2019 Top Ten Experiment, it’s interesting to note at no point in the first twenty-eight months of the Top Ten 2018 Experiment has the approach of focusing on the Top Ten cryptos outperformed the overall market. Not even once.
May should be interesting. The BTC Halving is only a few days away and the world continues to wage war on COVID-19. Stay tuned for how the crypto markets overall and the Top Ten Portfolios react to these events.
Final word: second waves of COVID-19 are definitely possible. Please take care of yourselves, your families, and your communities. Keep up the social distancing, wear a mask, and wash your hands. Be careful out there.
Thanks for reading and for supporting the experiment. I hope you’ve found it helpful. I continue to be committed to seeing this process through and reporting along the way. Feel free to reach out with any questions and stay tuned for progress reports. Keep an eye out for the original 2018 Top Ten Crypto Index Fund Experiment and the 2019 Top Ten Experiment follow up experiment.
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