Memecoins, AI, RWA, and Stablecoins Drive Growth in Q2, 2024: CoinMarketCap H1 Report
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2024-07-03 10:13

In Q2 2024, the global crypto market cap took a hit, dropping 14.5% to $2.3 trillion, according to Coinmarketcap’s H1 2024 report. Despite this, the 24-hour trade volume soared by 223%, reaching $79.4 billion. The Crypto Fear and Greed Index stands at a neutral 49, showing a trend towards fear since Q1. Bitcoin's dominance remains strong at 53%, with no signs of an altcoin season. Liquidity has decreased by 18.5%, echoing a bearish phase within a broader bull market trend.


Quick Take

  • Memecoins became the most popular crypto category in Q2 2024, accounting for 23% of page views on CoinMarketCap.

  • The stablecoin sector grew by 8.6%, while AI and Big Data sectors saw a 2.5% increase. Ethena and Lista's launches significantly boosted the stablecoin sector.

  • Solana's ecosystem added 20 new tokens in Q2, surpassing Ethereum's 14. Solana-based memecoins outperformed Ethereum-based ones, with returns of 8,469% compared to 962%.

  • Political meme tokens, led by MAGA (TRUMP), gained prominence, with the total market cap reaching $784 million. The MAGA token alone surged over 5100% this year.

  • The RWA sector, dominated by fiat-collateralized stablecoins, saw significant growth. Notable developments include Ethena's USDe, which increased its market cap by 934%, and BlackRock's BUIDL fund, which attracted $453 million in just three months.

Memecoins, Stablecoins, and AI Drive Crypto Market Growth in Q2 2024

Most active sectors in the crypto market in Q2 2024 | Source: Coinmarketcap 


Three sectors experienced positive growth in Q2: memecoins, stablecoins, and AI & Big Data. Memecoins, for the first time, have become the most popular category, accounting for 23% of page views. 


The memecoin season of March and early April gave way to focus on stablecoins (+8.6%), AI, and Big Data (+2.5%). Ethena and Lista's launches bolstered the stablecoin sector. Tether's $4.52 billion profit in Q1 underscores the sector's profitability, attracting new projects. Conversely, the hype around AI has declined since its February peak, capturing only 6.4% of attention in June. Derivatives and stablecoins also saw moderate growth. The memecoin and AI & Big Data sectors are slowing, with many projects delisting. 


Solana Overtakes Ethereum in the Memecoin Race 

Solana vs. Ethereum memecoins | Source: Coinmarketcap 


Solana's ecosystem has also gained significant attention, potentially challenging Ethereum's dominance. CoinMarketCap data reveals the Solana ecosystem is thriving, adding 20 new tokens in Q2, followed by Ethereum with 14 new tokens. Solana-based memecoins have outperformed Ethereum-based ones, returning an average of 8,469% compared to Ethereum's 962%. This trend is driven by speculative capital flows and the success of tokens like WIF and BONK.


In the Solana ecosystem, memecoins dominate, reflecting a speculative rush. Retail investors prefer quick gains over traditional projects, indicating an anti-establishment sentiment. This casino-like atmosphere contrasts with Ethereum's focus on Real World Assets (RWA) and AI, emphasizing practical applications and bridging traditional finance with blockchain.


PolitiFi Meme Tokens: Trump Leads the Pack

Trump vs. Biden in the PolitiFi sector among memecoins | Source: Coinmarketcap 


Political meme tokens (PolitiFi) have emerged as a significant subcategory, with a total market cap of $784 million. The leading token, MAGA (TRUMP), has gained over 5100% this year, fueled by Trump's vocal support for crypto and acceptance of crypto for campaign donations.


Real World Assets (RWA) Sector Fuels Stablecoin Growth 

RWA sector and stablecoin market see growth | Source: Coinmarketcap 


The RWA sector is experiencing significant growth, driven primarily by fiat-collateralized stablecoins, which now make up 96.6% of the total market cap in this category. Tether (USDT) remains the dominant force, consistently setting new market cap highs and serving as the base pair for almost 70% of spot trading volume on centralized exchanges (CEXs).


USDC has seen a notable resurgence, increasing its market cap by 32% in the first half of 2024. This growth is largely attributed to Circle's strategic push towards institutional clients and the launch of Coinbase International, which has brought increased volume to USDC in non-US markets.


A standout performer in the RWA sector is Ethena's USDe, launched in February 2024. This new stablecoin has already seen a 934% increase in market cap. Its high yield of 33.5% has attracted significant capital inflows, making it one of the fastest-growing assets in the sector. Despite the initial airdrop and the launch of its native token, ENA, USDe continues to draw considerable investor interest.


BlackRock's BUIDL fund, which launched on Ethereum in March 2024, leads tokenized funds in assets under management (AUM). The fund witnessed an impressive $453 million inflow in less than three months, highlighting the growing institutional interest in tokenized finance. Ondo Finance, the largest contributor to BUIDL, has been instrumental in this growth, adding $195 million to its AUM. Since its launch on January 18, ONDO has gained 634%, making it the leading coin in the RWA sector.


Despite this progress, the total value locked (TVL) in RWA protocols currently stands at $4.39 billion, still below the previous cycle's high of $6.37 billion. This gap suggests that there is ample room for further growth in the sector as it continues to mature and attract more institutional capital.


Conclusion: A Dynamic Quarter

Q2 2024 has been marked by significant shifts in the crypto market. Despite a notable 14.5% drop in global market cap, the surge in 24-hour trade volume by 223% reflects a resilient trading environment. Bitcoin's dominance at 53% and the sustained bullish macro sentiment indicate the strength of institutional investment, yet retail engagement remains conspicuously low.


The stablecoin sector has shown robust growth, driven by new projects like Ethena and Lista, and Tether's substantial profits. Meanwhile, Solana's ecosystem has emerged as a formidable competitor to Ethereum, particularly in the memecoin space, where speculative investments are on the rise.


However, this quarter also highlights the market's vulnerabilities. The decline in liquidity by 18.5% and the trending fear sentiment underscore potential risks. Investors should remain cautious, as market conditions can shift rapidly. The decreasing interest in AI and the volatility of memecoins further add to the market's unpredictability.


As always, due diligence and a risk-aware approach are crucial for navigating the dynamic world of cryptocurrencies.


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