Pepe’s rise has sparked renewed investor interest in memecoins as a whole, with total trading volume rising to $2.6 billion in the first week of May, up from $408,000 the week before, according to Dune Analytics data.
“Memecoins spike from time to time, and this has historically happened when the market is light choppy or sideways,” said Todd Groth, head of indices research at CoinDesk Indices. “It’s almost like the market isn’t moving up fast enough and traders find these smaller tokens to trade.”
In fact, the latest memecoin frenzy occurs when the 2023 bitcoin rally stalls. The number 1 cryptocurrency is down 6% since mid-April, to $27,416.
Pepe, which trades in fractions of a cent, is down 60% from its May 5 high, though it still has a market capitalization of nearly $740 million.
Its market value makes it the third largest memecoin after dogecoin and shiba inu, both born as Internet jokes in reference to a Japanese dog breed, which have more than $10 billion and $5 billion in capitalization, respectively. .