Bitcoin (BTC), Ethereum (ETH), Ripple (XRP), and Bitcoin Cash (BCH) are on fire

Just when the cryptocurrency bull run looked to have run out of steam, the market moved into overdrive during Asian trade on Tuesday.

This has taken the entire value of the crypto market up to US$418.8 billion according to Coin Market Cap. This is almost 5% higher than where it stood just a few short hours ago.

One of the key drivers of this gain in market value has of course been crypto behemoth Bitcoin (BTC).

The world’s largest cryptocurrency is up 4% over the last 24 hours to US$9,204 per coin, lifting its market capitalisation to over US$156.4 billion. This equates to 37.3% of the entire market.

While no single catalyst is known to be behind this latest gain, there is speculation that it is due to a post-Tax Day bull run in the United States.

According to CNBC, Tom Lee, co-founder and head of research at Fundstrat Global Advisors, told his clients that “the winter is ending for Bitcoin” after tax-related selling fades.

So much so, Mr Lee has tipped the Bitcoin price to reach US$20,000 by the end of the year.

What about the altcoins?

It certainly isn’t just the Bitcoin price that is storming higher today. Many of the leading altcoins have put on even stronger gains today.

The highlight has once again been the Bitcoin Cash (BCH) price. It is up a massive 18.2% over the last 24 hours to US$1,546.65 per token.

Traders have been fighting to get hold of the altcoin ahead of its hard fork on May 15. That hard fork will create a new and improved version of the cryptocurrency by the name of Bitcoin ABC. It appears crypto traders have high expectations for the new coin which will boast a block size four times greater than BCH.

Elsewhere, the next best performer among the major altcoins has been the EOS (EOS) price. It is up 16.3% over the last 24 hours to US$13.47 per token. This latest gain firmly cements its position as the fifth-largest cryptocurrency ahead of Litecoin (LTC) which is stuck in sixth position.

Interestingly, Litecoin’s founder tipped the coin he created to overtake Bitcoin Cash earlier this year to become the fourth-largest cryptocurrency. But considering the gap between the two now stands at over US$15 billion, this seems highly unlikely.

Other strong performers on Tuesday include Ethereum (ETH) and Ripple (XRP) which are both up around 6% during the period and show no signs of slowing.

Foolish takeaway

Crypto markets are certainly on fire at moment and could be poised to climb notably higher in my opinion, especially with trader sentiment on a high.

But things can change very quickly, so I would suggest that investors only play with what they can afford to lose.

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Motley Fool contributor James Mickleboro has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool Australia has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Scott Phillips.

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