Bitcoin’s rally may be getting all the attention—perhaps rightly so, as it is the biggest digital asset—but there is astonishing price action in a token based on a meme, Shiba Inu, which suggests animal spirits are spreading across the crypto space.

Current Market Trends

While Bitcoin prices have gained 4% over the past 24 hours to near $68,000—within striking distance of the crypto’s record of about $69,000—Shiba Inu has ripped more than 60% higher over the same period to the highest levels since late 2021.

Shiba Inu is a so-called memecoin—a blockchain project and associated token initially based on an internet joke, even if the crypto ecosystem has since become more substantial. Shiba Inu is a play on Dogecoin, the original memecoin, which is itself based on an internet joke involving a shiba inu dog.

Dogecoin prices are doing well, too, surging 15% over the past day and outperforming most other smaller tokens.

Memecoins Taking Center Stage

“Memecoins have recently captured the spotlight among cryptocurrency investors, indicating a shift toward markets driven by attention,” analysts at blockchain venture group Ryze Labs wrote in a note.

Within the world of cryptos—considered a higher-risk asset than stocks and the S&P 500—memecoins are at the further end of the risk curve. Outsize volatility in these tokens and evidence that traders are piling into the cryptos is a signal that animal spirits are spreading across the digital asset universe, and bullish sentiment is reaching fever pitch.

It could spell further gains for digital assets, or be a warning that the froth may soon give way to a correction.

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