2021’s Crypto-in-Assessment: Going Mainstream – Kraken Weblog


If 2020 was the yr of the bull, 2021 was the yr that crypto went mainstream. Previously twelve months, we’ve witnessed leaps in adoption, infrastructure, regulation, and coverage — to not point out new all-time highs.

As we head into 2022, the Kraken Intelligence staff revisited a few of the previous yr’s most notable market occasions and offered an outlook of what could also be anticipated within the yr forward.

The ₿ull costs on

For the third yr in a row, the crypto markets closed larger (+187%) in what stays a macro bull market pattern. Although not as spectacular as 2020’s return of +310%, it’s properly forward of 2019’s +58% return.

BTC and most different crypto-assets completed the yr larger and outperformed conventional monetary belongings just like the S&P 500, the NASDAQ, gold, authorities bonds and high-yield bonds. Regardless of the most recent market pullback to sub-$50k, historic volatility, technical patterns, and on-chain exercise collectively counsel that the macro BTC bull run isn’t over and will pattern larger in 2022

Crypto enters the zeitgeist

Developments in 2021 both accelerated the adoption and success of crypto-assets, or served as a headwind that gave market contributors a cause for pause. Regardless of the ups and downs and the retracement from all-time highs, crypto got here out on high; the business’s innovation and funding have by no means appeared higher. 

Essentially the most notable occasions of 2021 embrace El Salvador’s adoption of BTC as authorized tender, Elon Musk’s vocal opposition to the main crypto-asset (after initially asserting Tesla’s help for BTC funds), China formally banning Bitcoin, and the approval of the primary BTC ETF within the U.S (albeit an ETF tied to the futures market quite than the underlying spot market).

Infrastructure, NFTs and DeFi

Proof of the surge in crypto adoption is obvious within the balances held by BTC and ETH addresses, CBDC developments, buying and selling quantity, companies including crypto to their stability sheets, and open help and recognition by well-respected gamers in conventional finance.

Demand for DeFi and NFTs have fuelled innovation in a spread of Layer 1 and Layer 2 platforms, resulting in spectacular development in 2021. The demand noticed these protocols chart new territory on social media, drawing a brand new era of customers into the crypto house. Additional, the underlying crypto-assets powering these Layer 1 platforms (e.g., ETH, SOL, ADA, DOT) vastly outperformed the broader crypto market as contributors discovered nice worth of their utility.

Wish to be taught extra about what went down and what’s forward? Obtain Going Mainstream for the low-down on 2021 and a snapshot of the highway forward:

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