Naked Capitalism has the article The Economics of Cryptocurrency Pump and Dump Schemes.
The surge of interest in cryptocurrencies has been accompanied by a proliferation of fraud, largely in the form of pump and dump schemes. This column provides the first measure of the scope of such schemes across cryptocurrencies. The results suggest that the phenomenon is widespread and often quite profitable, and highlight the need for concerted efforts from industry and regulators to fight cryptocurrency price manipulation.
The above excerpt is too kind to the whole idea of cryptocurrencies. I think that the only reason why these cryptocurrencies have become so popular is the opportunity they present for the pumping and dumping operations. If you are thinking of “investing” in cryptocurrencies, just remember these things were invented for suckers like you.