Minting Dozens of Coins a Day, Speculators Tap Into Crypto Craze

Risk is running rampant in financial markets. Stocks trade at dot-com-era valuations, the IPO pipeline is full, SPACs are back, Bitcoin’s headed toward a record. And right on cue, here come the crypto opportunists.

Fueled by a spike in speculative appetite, cryptocurrency entrepreneurs are offering new digital coins at a torrid pace reminiscent of the Bitcoin boom three years ago. Among the freshly listed: Porkchop, Davecoin, Spaghetti, Newtonium and Whale. Many have no obvious utility, but investors have poured billions into them up in hopes of riding one to an easy profit.The world of crypto has always attracted peddlers of get-rich-quick products when fans of rewiring the global financial system start buying into a new idea. In 2017, it was Bitcoin and the end of fiat currency.

This time, buzz is growing over decentralized finance applications that seek to cut out institutions from things like lending. Back then, tax cuts had juiced the global stock market. Now, central banks are plowing trillions into the system, depressing bond yields and sparking a rush into alternative assets.

“I lived through and profited through the 2017 crypto bubble and this feels somewhat reminiscent to it,” Michael Novogratz, founder and chief executive officer of Galaxy Investment Partners, said in an interview on BNN Bloomberg Television. “It was the ICOs back then. A new ICO every day and the herd would swim to that ICO and jam the price up and there’d be a frenzy of liquidity and price and then it would collapse and they’d move on to the next thing. And it feels a little bit like that.”

More than 500 coins have been listed in the past month, according to While exact figures for comparison are hard to come by, the boom hearkens back to when the blockchain frenzy saw iced tea makers, office-product resellers and even Kodak among those issuing thousands of coins with the promise of decentralized wealth. Those took in billions before a crackdown by regulators revealed almost all were nothing more than marketing proposals. There’s little reason to expect that investors will fare better this time.