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Litecoin’s Future After Lee’s Exit: Soar or Snore?

Alpesh Patel
For the cryptocurrency world, the headlines might be dominated by Bitcoin due to its domineering posture over the industry and because it accounts for over half of the total value of the crypto markets, but it is far not the best performing cryptocurrency in the world this year.

With over 1300 distinct products, coins and tokens, it is very easy to get lost in the clutter of different names of products each professing to be the best thing on the market, trying to solve particular real-world problems. Looking closer, one can see that among the best performing cryptocurrencies in terms of appreciation in value this year is Litecoin.

Back to Charlie

Created in 2011 by Ex-Google engineer Charlie Lee with the vision of solving some of Bitcoin’s emerging problems such as speed and cost of transactions on its network, Litecoin has always marketed itself as the silver to Bitcoin’s that it is only in the market to complement the King of all cryptocurrency not to replace it.

But in 2017, this altcoin suddenly showed off its muscle as it began trading in the beginning of the year at just over $4 and had gone to achieve a peak price of over $400 in just months, before sliding back.

With its creator a well-known figure in the tech world, unlike Bitcoin’s Satoshi Nakamoto (whose identity still remains a thing of speculation), the rise in prominence of Litecoin this year seems to be creating a big controversy around the creator of the altcoin as he has not been shy to comment on it via his twitter page.

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Despite often warning Litecoin holders of the dangers of losing almost all their money from investing in the cryptocurrency due to the volatility of the industry, it seems as it has not been enough for some crypto enthusiasts as he is often targeted for criticism from those who say he pumps up the coin for his own personal benefit. In response to these criticisms, Lee recently announced he has sold all his Litecoin holdings and donated others to charity, which should allow him to comment on it without any conflict of interest.

Lee’s decision has been received with mixed reaction across the spectrum, as some say Lee’s exit will allow Litecoin to grow more naturally without his constant interference, as he will now only be speaking from the point of view of an independent analyst, while others see the exit as something that will be detrimental to the currency long-term.

Those who believe that the decision is uncalled for point to the apparent stagnation of Bitcoin as it has been unable to carry out any meaningful update from its original form that will enable it to become more efficient as a currency, due to the lack of an influential figure like Nakamoto himself, who could have easily swayed opinion of the core developers and miners to accept such a change.

It is still early days to speculate what the exit of Charlie Lee will mean for Litecoin or its standing in the future in the cryptocurrency universe, but one thing we can all be sure of, is that the former Bitcoin junior is coming of age and will not shy away from wresting control from its big cousin over the rest of the day-to-day transaction niche it is seen to be abandoning, as it (Bitcoin) retracts to a more store of value coin.

One thing is for sure, Charlie Lee’s exit clears Litecoin trading to a fair and reliable coin exchange. It is now the fundamentals and the technology that will determine Litecoin future prices.

*Figures may not be up to date

Alpesh is a hedge fund manager and Author of Trading Online (Financial Times). He is a partner to 24option who offer CFD trading on Cryptocurrencies.

This article was originally posted on FX Empire