After a year of massive losses, cryptos seem to be gaining momentum again, and XRP is one of the big gainers. In the last 24-hours, XRP (XRP) is up by over 13% and is now close to breaking $0.40. If this momentum sustains, then XRP could end the year above $1. This would mark a major milestone in anticipation of more solid gains in 2019, especially if the challenges of 2018 are fully resolved.
One of the biggest challenges that XRP faced in 2018 is regulatory uncertainty in the United States. In a recent AMA, Brad Garlinghouse touched on how regulatory uncertainty in the U.S has increased in 2018. U.S regulators have been slow to offer clarity on digital assets, and as a result, institutional money has held back from making heavy investments in this market. The other challenge has been the massive drop in crypto prices that has scared away new retail investors from the crypto market.
In spite of this, XRP has had its fair share of wins. The biggest of them is the improved regulatory climate in the rest of the world. Asia has been leading the way, in terms of adoption of ripple products, and by extension the adoption of XRP. This will anchor XRP’s growth in 2019, as more institutions start using XRapid in Asia. On top of that, the increased uptake of XRP all across the world, as well as ripple’s in-roads in the banking system, offset the risks of any negative regulatory moves in the United States.
For instance, with XRP’s increased adoption worldwide, it is clear that XRP is not a ripple security. As such, would probably be imprudent for U.S regulators to declare XRP a security, when it has so many other global actors involved, outside of the U.S and independent of ripple. Another win for XRP in 2018 was the increased number of exchanges using XRP as a base currency. Not only have they raised awareness about XRP, they have also played a role in pushing up theliquidity levels for XRP, which is key to future adoption.
These 2018 wins will be instrumental to the growth of XRP in 2019. For instance, the increased institutional uptake of ripple products in places like the Far East and the Middle East will play a major role in driving up the demand for XRP. Brad Garlinghouse has stated severally that they expect at least a dozen banks to use XRapid by 2019. Considering that he is the CEO of ripple, chances are that ripple has commitments from a dozen banks or more. A dozen banks using XRapid would drive up the price of XRP in 2019, since banks need to hold XRP, when using XRapid for cross-border transactions. This is something huge for XRP investors to look forward to in 2019.
Another interesting thing to look forward to in 2019 is speculative buying. As long as XRP holds the number 2 spot, speculative buying by new retail investors could significantly drive up XRP in 2019. Speculative buying could come from the fact that unlike in January 2018, when the market was at its peak, prices are now at a long-term support levels. This could drive up bullish sentiment both from institutional and retail money.
The year 2019 could be a shining light for XRP.