Ripple has overtaken Ethereum for the number two spot among cryptocurrencies with a market cap of $8.898 billion compared to Ethereum’s $8.561 billion, according to coinmarketcap.com. Ripple’s recent 24-hour volume also surpassed Ethereum’s at $366.9 million versus $261.26 million.
Litecoin remains in fourth place with a distant $1.487 billion market cap.
Ripple’s growth rate leads the $1 billion capitalization group in the recent 24-hour period, posting an 83.91 percentage point gain. NEM, number five in market capitalization at just over $1 billion, posted a 37.5% change in market value. Bitcoin posted a 5.95% gain while Ethereum suffered a 3.56% dip, and Litecoin a 1.42% drop.
Ripple’s gain has been credited to a strategic partnership initiative, teaming with Asian and Australian banks in conjunction with its stated goal of acting as a PayPal-like mechanism for large interbank transfers.
Ripple in March announced a new partner in Japan’s largest bank, MUFG. The Japanese banking giant, which is also the third largest bank corporation in the world, announced that it chose Ripple to join its global payments steering group. The interbank group, essentially a network of global banks, will help support Ripple’s payment transaction rules and standards for international money transfers using the Ripple blockchain. MUFG has also become the first bank to announce a concrete roadmap in the space, one that will offer international money transfers commercially over a Ripple-powered blockchain.
While Ripple has grown its valuation faster than Ethereum, Ethereum has also moved at a rapid pace. Google searches for Ethereum have spiked to an all-time high, nearly doubling in a one-week period.
Some countries appear to be using ETH a hedge against national currencies. Switzerland, where the Ethereum Foundation is based, showed the strongest interest, followed by Venezuela, which is suffering triple-digit inflation.
South Korea seems to have fallen in love with the currency. Its three largest exchanges handle twice the ETH/fiat volume of Coinbase’s GDAX and Kraken combined.
South Korea is also big into fantasy sports, an area where ETH’s smart contracts can be used to make the game more transparent and reduce cheating.
The total cryptocurrency market capitalization (price per coin times amount of coins in circulation) stands at $53 billion.
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