Pepe’s Memecoin Emerges as the Latest Cryptocurrency Sensation, Pushing Dogecoin Aside.
The cryptocurrency market has been swept up by the rise of Pepe, a new frog-themed cryptocurrency based on an internet meme. In the month since its launch, the market value of Pepe has risen to nearly $2bn, although it has since declined by more than half. Pepe is part of a subcategory of altcoin, which comprises tokens other than Bitcoin and Ethereum, and follows in the footsteps of the similarly-themed Dogecoin, which is now the eighth-largest digital asset by market capitalisation. Pepe has enjoyed a more rapid surge in popularity, with its number of holders surpassing 100,000 in just 22 days, compared to 90 days for Shiba Inu. Despite being described by its anonymous developers as having “no intrinsic value or expectation of financial return,” Pepe has caught the attention of Tesla CEO Elon Musk, who has previously referenced the coin on Twitter. Pepe is available on a number of major cryptocurrency exchanges, including Binance and Kraken. As is typical with cryptocurrency, there are concerns over the currency’s lack of intrinsic value and dangerous levels of volatility. However, those within the industry are optimistic about Pepe’s potential, with the introduction of new coins generating a fear of missing out among investors. The popularity of tokens like Pepe grows as they become increasingly available on crypto exchanges, which can act as implicit endorsements and bring in billions of dollars of liquidity. The wider dynamics of cryptocurrency markets also play a role in determining memecoin prices; trends in Bitcoin, the largest coin, often lead to similar patterns in other cryptocurrencies. There are concerns that the surge in memecoins could indicate froth before a correction, as seen with the token Squid towards the end of 2021.