Zombie cryptocurrencies are tokens that have sat on the shelf without being traded for months. But in the current bear market, these cold assets are on the increase.
Yahoo Finance UK took a look at some of the thousands of cryptocurrencies that are not technically dead, but not quite alive either.
There are around 12,100 crypto tokens that have effectively ceased trading this year, according to a report from data provider Nomics.
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These assets without a pulse are the abandoned victims of investors who have lost interest as the market downturn in crypto intensifies.
Most zombie tokens were given the breath of life amid the retail mania of 2020 and 2021, but hype has an expiry date and as caution dominated investor behaviour and traders began to avoid risky assets amid the current macroeconomic headwinds, unnecessary assets were dumped and forgotten.
Watch: 'Bitcoin will eat into global finance until it's $1m per coin' | The Crypto Mile
The rise of zombie crypto tokens is a result of the digital aspect of blockchain technology — there is no cost in creating a new token and the open-source code can be copied and pasted and allowing for a multitude of new varieties of coins.
There is also little to no regulatory cost in issuing new crypto tokens, and no limit to the warehouse for dead tokens.
The combined market capitalisation of all cryptocurrencies fell from a height of nearly $3tn (£2.7tn) in November 2021 to a current value of around $1tn.
As capital has haemorrhaged from the crypto-market, the liquidity for new and existing projects has dried up, making it difficult for the tokens connected to crypto projects that have genuine use cases to be traded, affecting the viability of these projects to sustain their operations throughout the year.
Here is a list of Zombie cryptocurrencies — cryptos with low to zero trade volumes — courtesy of data from livecoinwatch.com.
Bitcoin private (BTCP-USD) was a fork between bitcoin (BTC-USD) with a merger to ZClassic, a privacy-centric cryptocurrency, which aimed at creating a new version of bitcoin that was capable of anonymous transactions.
The bitcoin fork — a new version of the blockchain — began with some hype as traders bought into the new token. But this soon dissipated, leaving the volume of trade of bitcoin private almost negligible.
Some exchanges list bitcoin private, although it trades at extremely low volumes.
On the BTCP Reddit page, the last entry does not bode well for those who still hold on the token and hope for a jolt of life to animate it.
Posted two years ago, the last post stated: "I just made another loss with BTCP, I have lost $10k so far. I sent emails to everybody no answer I asked for help by tweeting BTCP, but none of the developers ever reply to me. BTCP is pumping to dump please be careful."
The last reported happycoin (HPC) price was $0.0124. Happycoin's yearly trade volume is unknown.
It has a circulating supply of 605,858,930,040,090 and max supply of 1,000,000,000,000,000. happycoin is now only traded on one exchange, YoBit.
The happycoin website states: "Happycoin for happy life. Happycoin is a digital currency designed for use of peer-to-peer technology to operate with no central authority; managing transactions and issuing money is carried out collectively by the network."
On its Youtube channel, the last video was uploaded nearly one year ago.
3. Avo (Toast.Finance)
The Twitter (TWTR) account says: "This is a community project!"
One year ago on the Toast.Finance Reddit one user wrote: "What happened to the price yesterday? Total rugpull? New contract? Down 100% and no comments on this on twitter?"
The wolf cryptocurrency is connected to a trading platform that offers data, and crypto community resources. The Twitter page associated with the coin states that it is a "utility coin that is optimised for men’s lifestyle".
The last tweet on the page suggests a rallying cry for a community that may have long abandoned the project, it said: "Having the courage to take the steps we always wanted to take is the only way of showing that we trust in wolfcoin."
Bear (Bear-USD) Coin is a cryptocurrency designed to help animals through decentralised fundraising and blockchain solutions.
Its website says it works in cooperation with NGOs and animal lovers around the world.
Four months ago a Reddit user asked, "what happened to bearcoin in 2017-2019?"
He added: "I had a random memory of a bear talking about his own crypto that I think was given based on how active you were in some way?
"Could be wrong about how it worked but I can’t find anything on it now. I know it was a few years ago. Just looking for more info to see if this was real/what happened or if I’m losing my mind."
The marmite ($MARMITE) cryptocurrency is a low market cap token with a low 24-hour volume of $116.
It has a total supply of 100,000,000,000 $MARMITE. $MARMITE reached its all-time high on 16 March 2022 when it was trading at $0.000002.
The marmite founder posted a 'ask me anything video' on Youtube in March 2022. The coin has seen little activity since that time.
$ick mask (ICK) is currently ranked as number 19,547 cryptocurrency by market cap. On Monday it was trading at $281. The trade volume in the last year has been negligible. $ick mask reached its highest price on September 20, 2020, when it was trading at its all-time high of $ 904.58.
The price of steak token is $0.003846 per coin. Steak token is now worth far below its all-time high of $22.62.
In the last 24 hours, steak token had a trade volume of $4.72. The Steak Network, which is linked to steak token states on its website that, "using steak token on the Steak Network, users can trustlessly share proof of steak, knowing for certain that the steakchain is exclusively made up of verifiably rare, or medium-rare, pictures of steak".
According to Livecoinwatch, the safu cryptocurrency had a trade volume of $5.00 in the past 24 hours.
This is extremely low activity when compared to blue-chip cryptocurrencies that see 24-hour trading volumes in billions of dollars.
Alpha (ALPHA-USD) is an ERC-20 token, deployed on the Ethereum network. It is a governance token for the Alpha Venture DAO, decentralised autonomous organisation.
Alpha Venture DAO state on their website: "Our innovations have extended into an expansive ecosystem of products."
Nick Gauthier, co-founder at Nomics, said that most zombie projects are related to meme coins, small personal projects, and short-term leveraged assets.
But the data also revealed that even assets that are currently trading have a slowing heartbeat, with trade volume on exchanges diminishing.
The data provider showed that most of the thousands of cryptocurrencies in existence will go through a whole day with no trading volume.
Jacob Joseph, a research analyst at researcher CryptoCompare, told Bloomberg: “During the bull market of 2021, there was plenty of money, attention, and liquidity for new and existing projects.
“However, in the ongoing bear market, even good projects with utility will struggle to sustain their operations as they lose access to capital and funding."
Crypto investor Aaron Brown told Bloomberg: “There’s no storefront to board up, no inventory to sell, no employees to claim unemployment.
“Just people lose interest in a token and move on to other things.”
“Since the cost of a crypto startup is close to zero, and anyone in the world can try without discrimination or regulation, lots of people will keep trying.
“Where do you think the dead coins are piling up? It’s not like cyberspace is a warehouse with limited capacity.”
Most of the daily trade volume in the cryptocurrency market is dominated by the major blue chip cryptocurrencies.