Ripples (XRP) is currently sitting as the number three cryptocurrency by market capitalization, largely due to it’s totaly supply of ~100 billion XRP. The cryptocurrency is sold and managed by a company of the same name, Ripple, founded in 2012 by Chris Larsen and Jed McCaleb.
While Bitcoin is a decentralized digital currency, Ripple is a decentralized transaction network that also contains a digital currency called ripples or XRP. The network is seen by many as a Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunications (SWIFT) analog, or potential SWIFT killer, with it’s on cross-border payment facilitation.
XRP seemed to have dropped off the trading radar until large spikes in value during April and May 2017, when announcements stating that banks had begun experimenting with the Ripple protocol for commercial purposes arose, and the majority of Ripples XRP holdings would be put in escrow. XRP was heavily bought, and soon after heavily sold, which indicates heavy speculative trading.
Ripple’s Consensus Ledger is said to be able to process up to 1,000 transactions per second and settle international payments in three seconds. More than 90 banks have now joined the Ripple blockchain network, and the company continues to make moves across Asia and India in an attempt to increase awareness and adoption.
If Ripple (the company) went away tomorrow, the XRP ledger would continue to exist and trade. However, Ripple controls ~65% of the total supply of XRP. Concerns in the market about uncertainty surrounding the company's ongoing XRP distribution prompted CEO Brad Garlinghouse to announce that the company would place 55b XRP into escrow by the end of the year. The funds are locked in 55 separate 1b contracts, which expire on consecutive months dates. Each contract expires on the first day of a month, giving Ripple access to one contract every month to spend as they see fit.
Whatever is unused at the end of each month to the b...