Ripple Is Up. So Why Is Its Cofounder Selling His XRP Tokens?

As the price of Ripple’s XRP cratered in the previous month, the company’s co-founder “accelerated” his sale of XRP tokens. 

A WSJ report states that Jed McCaleb, one of Ripple’s co-founders, sold between 20,000 to 40,000 XRP per day until July. But that amount dramatically increased in August. The WSJ article states that McCaleb, who left Ripple Labs to co-found Stellar, sold 499,312 XRP each day, increasing to 752,076 XRP on one such day. The price of XRP fell by 25% during the month of August. 

McCaleb’s sale of XRP tokens has continued into this month. In the last six days itself, h has sold XRP worth $150,000 each day. He did not provide a reason for the selloff. “I’m not selling more than I have agreed to with Ripple,” he told the Journal. (See also: Is The Rise In Ripple's Prices A Bubble?)

Ripple’s price surged briefly over the weekend on the back of positive news reports about the launch of a new product that uses XRP. If xRapid, the new product, gains traction with banks, then it will increase XRP’s liquidity and valuation in cryptocurrency markets. But the news boost lasted only over the weekend and the world’s third-most valuable cryptocurrency token has shed as much as 40% of its gains since yesterday. At 19:35 UTC, Ripple was changing hands at $0.45, a decline of 13.25% from its price 24 hours ago.

Gains From Rising Valuations 

McCaleb’s family and a donor-advised fund owned by McCaleb own about 7.3% of total XRP, according to the WSJ report. His personal holdings, including that of his family, amount to 5.3 billion XRP. Per the terms of his original agreement, McCaleb was restricted to a daily cap of XRP token sales. But the daily limits were revised to a percentage of total XRP trading volume in a given day in 2016. 

XRP’s rising valuation has boosted personal fortunes of the company’s founders and filled its parent company’s coffers. Since the increase in XRP price, Ripple Labs has stepped up its investment in outside ventures. It has also started a venture fund to invest in cryptocurrency- and blockchain-related startups. McCaleb’s Stellar blockchain uses the same technology as Ripple but is focused on emerging markets and nonprofits. It recently announced a partnership with IBM and launched a stablecoin that uses its blockchain. (See also: What is Stellar Blockchain?)   

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