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Crypto whales accumulate $708M in XRP as speculators storm the market

crypto whales

TL;DR Breakdown

  • XRP’s recent outperformance has been largely attributed to Ripple’s preparations for its legal battle
  • Brad Garlinghouse denies presence of an anonymous backer for court expenses.

Crypto whales have been busy accumulating Ripple (XRP) in recent months, with over $708 million worth of the digital asset bought in January alone, according to data provider Santiment. The buying spree has pushed the total amount of XRP held by crypto’s biggest players to a new all-time high of $8.1billion.

Accumulation spree by crypto whales

Santiment, which tracks the movements of digital assets in and out of crypto addresses that own at least 100XRP coins ($35,000), said the latest numbers show a massive accumulation spree by crypto whales. The data provider added that many whale addresses have been accumulating since November and December 2020 – when Ripple’s price was between $0.20and $0.30.

 The January accumulation was a whale affair. Whale addresses bought more than 60% of the total XRP volume that month.

Santiment

Whales are defined as crypto addresses holding at least 100,000unit so far particular cryptocurrencies. The number of the so-called whales has increased by15% over the past year, although XRP’s bear outlooks on the price charts. It is likely because Ripple’s digital asset fell sharply in 2020, allowing investors to accumulate more tokens at a lower price.

The Santiment data shows that the top 100 XRP holders account for over 90% of the total supply. BitMEX and its parent company, HDR Global Trading Ltd., maintain their position as the largest holder. The Hong Kong-based crypto derivatives exchange has amassed over $160 million worth of XRP, representing almost 20% of the total supply held by whales.

 XRP’s recent outperformance has been largely attributed to Ripple’s preparations for its legal battle with the U.S.  Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). Whale alert data also shows a massive transfer of over $400 Million XRP from Ripple Lab stolen from an unknown wallet on Jan. 31, which was exactly one day before the firm’s official response to the SEC lawsuit.

Speculation on Ripple’s anonymous backer

This raised speculation that Ripple had secured an anonymous backer willing to cover a significant portion of its legal battle expenses. Still, the rumors were officially quashed by CEO Brad Garlinghouse on Feb. 16:

I can say with confidence that Ripple is not funding the lawsuit with any of its XRP holdings.

Brad Garlinghouse, Ripple CEO

Ripple was sued by the SEC on Dec. 22 for allegedly selling over $700 million worth of unregistered securities to retail investors, claiming “XRP is a security under federal law and has been since at least 2013″.

The San Francisco-based firm denied the claims. XRP is currently trading at $0.44, up 38% in the past seven days and representing a market cap of over $21Billion –  ranking it third on CoinMarketCap‘s list of largest cryptocurrencies by market capitalization. The digital asset hit its all-time high (ATH) price of $.80on Jan. 04, 2020.

John Lincoln

John Lincoln

Lincoln contributes blockchain and crypto perspectives that meet the industry's selective information needs in a timely, undiluted fashion. His greatest wish is to share transformational technology through an engaging and easy-to-read style, making complex topics accessible to all.

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