By Gaurav S. Iyer, IFC Published : October 23, 2017
Ripple is on sale once again, dear reader, despite the currency’s growing popularity among banks and governments. The slump started early last week, just after Day One of Ripple’s inaugural conference.
The Ripple to USD exchange rate fell 6.29% to $0.191687. At the same time, the Ripple to Bitcoin rate dropped 2.21% to 0.00003357 BTC.
What happened, you ask?
Simple: Investors expected more than what was delivered.
It was not enough that former Chairman of the Federal Reserve Ben Bernanke keynoted the opening night of the conference, or that Tim-Berners Lee and Vitalik Buterin made significant speeches. Markets were simply looking for more substantial news.
It didn’t even matter that the Gates Foundation announced that it was using Ripple’s Interledger protocol to help serve the world’s underbanked population. Liquidity just vanished as the week wore on.
We saw investors exchange fewer than $100.0 million worth of XRP on Sunday and Monday. By contrast, trading volumes exceeded $963.1 million one week ago.
The steep fall in XRP comes at an odd time, too, because Ripple news recently gained wider circulation. For instance, there was a major piece in Fortune magazine that brilliantly exposed the differences between Ripple and Bitcoin. (Source: “Is Ripple for Real? A Closer Look at the Company Behind the Third Most Valuable Digital Currency,” Fortune, October 23, 2017.)
In the article, Ripple CEO Brad Garlinghouse says: “In 2017, people have realized there isn’t going to be one crypto to rule them all. You’re seeing vertical solutions where XRP is focused on payment problems, Ethereum is focused on smart contacts, and increasingly bitcoin is a store of value. Those aren’t competitive.”
He went on to explain that Ripple is specifically addressing a problem that commercial banks have with liquidity: Namely, that trillions of float are confined to nostro and vostro accounts.
He points out that not only can digital currencies give these funds mobility, but that Ripple is best positioned to do so, because “Bitcoin takes four hours to settle a transaction” and “XRP takes 3.6 seconds.”
XRP is offering all sides a win-win scenario. Banks reduce costs, customers gain efficiency, and investors reap profits. We find this trifecta far more convincing than a holy war against central banks, which is why we maintain our $2.00 Ripple price prediction for 2018.
As more and more investors come to recognize this nuanced difference, we are confident that Ripple prices will accelerate towards our forecast.