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5 Worst-Performing Cryptocurrencies in 2024 So Far

Connor Brooke
Last updated: | 12 min read
Disclaimer: Crypto is a high-risk asset class. This article is provided for informational purposes and does not constitute investment advice. You could lose all of your capital.
worst crypto

This year has been a positive one for crypto investors – unless you held the wrong coins. While Bitcoin soared past $73,000 and Ethereum hit a two-year high, other major altcoins crashed and burned.

Several projects failed to live up to expectations, from highly-hyped Layer-2 networks to Bitcoin forks. In this article, we’ll expose the 5 worst cryptocurrency performers of 2024 and analyze what went wrong.

Top 5 Biggest Crypto Losers in 2024 So Far


While the overall crypto market surged, these were the worst performers – the coins that cratered despite the bullish conditions. From past favorites to failed debutants, here are the year’s worst crypto investments so far:

1. MultiversX (EGLD)

Kicking off our list is MultiversX (formerly Elrond). This project aimed to solve blockchain scalability with high throughput and low fees. But its native token, EGLD, has plummeted over 60% this year thanks to several setbacks.

The team has previously missed critical deadlines like the launch of its Maiar DEX, eroding investor trust. Additionally, despite touting high performance, MultiversX has struggled to attract significant adoption and developer activity compared to its rivals.

EGLD price chart

Its rebranding from Elrond also drew criticism. Then, shifts in its staking model sparked centralization concerns. Add this to the fact that MultiversX operates in a crowded blockchain space, and it’s easy to see why EGLD has been one of the worst cryptocurrency projects this year.

But can it recover? If they want to turn things around, MultiversX’s team must quell community grievances and spur more ecosystem growth. Although rebuilding trust will take a while, this would be a positive start.

  • Coin Price: $29.48
  • Year-to-Date Change: -60%
  • All-Time High: $542.58 (November 2021)

2. Bitcoin SV (BSV)

Bitcoin Satoshi Vision, commonly known as Bitcoin SV (BSV), aimed to revive the original Bitcoin protocol. However, its blockchain has performed poorly in 2024. As a result, BSV’s value has plunged over 56% since the turn of the year.

Although it has never claimed to be the best altcoin on the market, BSV has still disappointed investors. Currently, there’s a lack of adoption, developer activity, and real-world utility.

BSV price chart

Its self-proclaimed “Satoshi” Craig Wright dealt a credibility blow after a UK court ruled he provided false evidence and perjured himself. The constant drama surrounding Wright’s legal battles (and questionable claims) has put a dampener on Bitcoin SV’s reputation. It’s like the project can’t catch a break.

Unless BSV finds a way to inspire confidence, increase decentralization, and ignite developer usage, it could become another abandoned fork. As such, it’s no surprise that BSV is one of the worst crypto performers of the year.

  • Coin Price: $44.19
  • Year-to-Date Change: -56%
  • All-Time High: $491.64 (April 2021)

3. Optimism (OP)

Optimism (OP) promised to solve Ethereum’s scaling woes – but its native OP token has become another example of diminished Layer-2 hype. OP’s value has plummeted over 52% since the start of 2024 as doubts crept in over its long-term usefulness.

With Ethereum’s upgrades promising improved scalability at the base level, the need for Layer-2’s like Optimism has been questioned. Compounding issues, OP faces rising competition from rivals like Arbitrum, which boasts a higher Total Value Locked (TVL).

OP price chart

OP’s slide followed a classic “buy the rumor, sell the news” cycle after hitting an all-time high of $4.85 in March. Without useful apps driving real demand, OP’s fading hype is evident.

Optimism needs to prove its Layer-2 solution will remain advantageous in the long run to recover. However, with alternatives like Base gaining traction, Optimism will likely face an uphill battle to restore investor confidence.

  • Coin Price: $1.89
  • Year-to-Date Change: -52%
  • All-Time High: $4.85 (March 2024)

4. Arbitrum (ARB)

Another of the biggest crypto losers this year is Arbitrum (ARB). Arbitrum was meant to be Ethereum’s golden child, but its ARB token has been crushed in 2024. ARB is now down over 50% and trades below $1.

It seems that Arbitrum has suffered from poor timing. In April, over 92 million vested ARB tokens were unlocked and flooded the market. This amounted to over $100 million in supply – and the selling pressure proved too much for the market to absorb.

ARB price chart

Losses compounded as Arbitrum’s promised scaling benefits became overshadowed by Ethereum’s network upgrades. So, instead of being one of the best Layer-2 blockchain tokens, ARB has become an also-ran in the face of Ethereum’s own improvements.

However, on-chain data shows that “whale activity” has been increasing, meaning large buyers may be buying tokens in the hope of a rebound. For that to happen, though, Arbitrum must separate itself from other Layer-2 networks by offering a value proposition that appeals to developers and users.

  • Coin Price: $0.814
  • Year-to-Date Change: -50%
  • All-Time High: $2.40 (January 2024)

5. Celestia (TIA)

Rounding off our list of the biggest crypto failures is Celestia (TIA). This modular blockchain promised to revolutionize scalability, but its native TIA token has been caught in a bearish spiral. At the time of writing, TIA is down 46% since the turn of the year.

While Celestia’s technology has been praised, the lofty developer promises couldn’t overcome macro pressures. Additionally, TIA’s high correlation with Bitcoin has meant that, in recent weeks, the token’s price has been trapped in a downtrend.

TIA price chart

Compounding issues, the consistent token unlocks from Celestia’s initial distribution have added steady selling pressure. Even open interest in TIA futures is down massively from March.

For TIA to rebound, the developers must ship working products that prove its design benefits. In addition, sentiment in the crypto market as a whole will need to improve drastically.

  • Coin Price: $6.45
  • Year-to-Date Change: -46%
  • All-Time High: $20.91 (February 2024)

What Causes a Cryptocurrency to Tank in Price?


Even the hottest performers can turn into crypto losers overnight. With that in mind, here are the potential factors that can cause a coin’s price to tank:

  • Security Breaches & Hacks: Nothing tanks confidence (and price) like a major exploit or hack. A prime example is when Mt. Gox got hacked back in 2014, causing Bitcoin’s price to plummet.
  • Negative Media Coverage: Unfavorable publicity around a coin’s team, product, or adoption can spook investors. Even if unsubstantiated, negative narratives can spread quickly, weighing heavily on sentiment.
  • Whales Dumping Holdings: When large investors (also known as whales) start selling off their holdings, the price can sink. This effect is amplified when multiple whales sell-off at the same time.
  • Macroeconomic Factors: Broader economic factors, like recessions, interest rate hikes, and regulatory crackdowns, can impact the prices of even the best crypto projects.
  • Technical Issues: Bugs, scalability problems, network outages – any major technical failure can erode trust in a crypto project and its native coin. Investors will look elsewhere if a project can’t deliver on its utility.
  • Competition: When better, faster, or cheaper alternatives emerge in a competitive sector like DeFi, investors may exit en masse for the “next big thing.” This is why staying ahead of the curve is critical.
  • Regulatory Crackdown: Cryptos that run afoul of securities laws often face massive selloffs. A prime example is FTX Token (FTT), which plummeted over 80% after the FTX exchange collapsed amid allegations of mishandling customer funds.
  • Development Delays: Many of the biggest crypto losers have been caused by the development team’s inability to deliver on their roadmap and strategic goals.
  • Unrealistic Expectations: Too much hype and unrealistic expectations sometimes set a coin up for an inevitable price crash. No project can live up to being dubbed “the next Bitcoin” overnight.
  • Sector-Specific Challenges: Finally, some of the biggest crypto failures have dealt with specific headwinds. For example, many new NFT projects struggled after the initial hype around these assets faded.

Should You Buy a Crypto After It Has Crashed?


Seeing a crypto’s price plummet can be gut-wrenching for investors. But it also presents potential opportunities for those with the stomach for it.

To decide if “buying the dip” is worth it, let’s weigh the arguments for and against investing in a crashed crypto:

Arguments for Buying a Crypto Post-Crash

While buying one of the worst crypto projects seems counterintuitive, there are some potential upsides to getting involved:

  • Discounted Prices: The most obvious benefit is the opportunity to buy the dip and accumulate at a discount. These fire-sale events can be great entry points for long-term believers in a project.
  • Take Advantage of Panic Sellers: Crypto crashes are often exacerbated by panic selling from traders looking to escape further losses. Smart investors can take the opposite side of these selloffs by scooping up tokens from “weak hands” traders.
  • Dollar-Cost Averaging: Finally, for those looking to build positions over time, buying aggressively into crashes enables more effective dollar-cost averaging strategies. This can lower an investor’s overall cost basis.

buy the dip

Arguments Against Buying a Crypto Post-Crash

Going dip buying can be enticing, but investors should carefully weigh the risks of investing in the biggest crypto losers:

  • Not Guaranteed to Recover: Just because a crypto has plunged doesn’t mean it will bounce back. Many sold-off tokens become permanent losers with no recovery in sight.
  • Don’t Catch a Falling Knife: Trying to time the bottom during crashes is challenging – even for seasoned traders. Cryptos can continue spiraling downwards for long periods, inflicting further pain on dip buyers.
  • Further Downside is Likely: Even the best long-term cryptos can face price declines. This selling pressure often leads to abundant supply, preventing much-needed relief rallies.

What Are Common Traits of Bad Cryptocurrencies to Invest In?


While even the cryptos with the most upside carry risk, some projects have glaring red flags that drastically increase the chances of losing your investment. From unsustainable tokenomics to lacking real-world utility, here are some common traits to watch out for when evaluating crypto opportunities:

Inflationary Tokenomics

An endless supply of tokens printed into circulation (with no cap) is a recipe for price depreciation. Inflationary tokenomics setups like these make HODLing futile since the asset is constantly being diluted.

Prime offenders include meme coins, with Dogecoin as a prominent example. However, many top meme coins implement deflationary mechanics, like token burns, to maintain decent scarcity.

Regulatory Scrutiny

Cryptos that face heavy regulatory scrutiny and crackdowns are incredibly risky investments. Just look at Ripple’s multi-year battle with the SEC over whether XRP is a security or not. This battle has taken its toll on investors – and XRP’s price.

Steering clear of cryptos that face these issues is key. By doing so, investors can avoid the legal risks that sometimes accompany these investments.

SEC and XRP

Lack of Clear Use Cases

Cryptos with no apparent utility or value proposition often struggle to grow their price over time. Once the hype fades, these cryptos quickly become abandoned projects. There are countless examples of this happening in once-hot sectors like DeFi, NFTs, and crypto gaming.

Poor Governance & Decision Making

Lastly, even the best web3 coins can be hampered by incompetent leadership, poor governance, and short-sighted decision-making. This can manifest in different ways, such as a lack of clear direction or technological mishaps.

Terra’s implosion is a prime example of poor decision-making. The questionable practices at Terraform Labs led to the de-pegging of its stablecoin, UST, and the subsequent crash of its sister token, LUNA.

What Is the Worst Cryptocurrency to Invest In?


Our pick for the worst cryptocurrency of 2024 is Bitcoin SV. Although it may be down less than MultiversX, Bitcoin SV stands out as the most ill-fated project so far.

While other coins have at least demonstrated scaling solutions or new tech before faltering, BSV has been weighed down by constant drama. Most of this drama surrounds its founder, Craig Wright.

BSV vs Bitcoin

From perjury rulings to battles about Bitcoin’s origins, BSV has become mired in distracting sideshows related to Wright. As a result, there has been little focus on utility and adoption.

Even worse, its big blocks and enterprise play have provided little differentiation in an already crowded market. Therefore, it can’t even be considered one of the best proof-of-work coins competing for a slice of the Bitcoin ecosystem.

Can Bitcoin SV recover? Right now, it’s hard to see a clear path forward. Without a clear technical vision or support to overcome Wright’s baggage, Bitcoin SV seems doomed to remain a fringe crypto.

Crypto With High Potential to Consider Instead


While the top crypto losers of 2024 have demonstrated the risks of chasing hype and narratives, several new projects could have far more potential:

  • PlayDoge (PLAY): This project combines meme appeal with actual utility through its P2E ecosystem. Players can earn PLAY tokens by playing Tamagotchi-style games – and stake them to earn more income.
  • WienerAI (WAI): This project offers an AI trading bot with a meme-worthy theme. If widely adopted, its AI capabilities could streamline the investing process and disrupt traditional trading.
  • Sealana (SEAL): Finally, Sealana aims to be one of the best meme coins launched on the Solana blockchain. Although it has no use case, its lazy seal mascot has resonated with the “degen” crypto crowd.

While none of these three are proven successes, they’ve demonstrated far more potential than the projects we’ve discussed previously. To learn more about them, check out our guide on the cryptos with the most potential in 2024.

Worst Cryptocurrency to Invest In: Conclusion


To summarize, this article has taken a look at the 5 worst cryptocurrency performers of 2024 so far. From poorly executed strategies to struggles with controversy, we analyzed the factors behind each of these coins’ spectacular downfalls.

While current winners like Bitcoin, Ethereum, and Solana steal the spotlight, understanding the losers provides valuable lessons about what to avoid when investing. So, let this serve as a cautionary tale – even in a bull market, the wrong investments can leave you holding the bag.

FAQs

Which crypto is at its lowest?

Out of the major cryptocurrencies on our list, MultiversX (EGLD) is at its lowest level this year, down a staggering 60% year-to-date.

Which crypto has fallen the most?

MultiversX, Bitcoin SV, and Optimism have seen the largest declines in 2024, all plummeting massively despite the bullish crypto market.

Which cryptocurrency should I avoid?

Based on its dismal performance so far this year, investors may want to avoid MultiversX. At the time of writing, this crypto is down over 60% since the start of 2024.

What is the biggest fail in crypto?

The catastrophic de-pegging of TerraUSD (UST) and LUNA in May 2022 is widely considered one of the biggest failures that the crypto industry has ever witnessed. LUNA’s collapse wiped out billions in market value and led to enormous losses for investors.

References

Disclaimer: Crypto is a high-risk asset class. This article is provided for informational purposes and does not constitute investment advice. You could lose all of your capital.

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