The XRP price jumped on Friday as interest in cryptocurrencies surged after Elon Musk’s Tesla snapped up $1.5 billion of bitcoin and BNY Mellon and Mastercard took steps towards using the digital tokens.
XRP, the cryptocurrency of the Ripple network, rose as much as 15%, before slipping back slightly. It was up 11% to $0.5987 as of 9am ET, according to Bitstamp.
The bitcoin price was 1.4% higher at $48,129 on the Bitstamp exchange, just off a record high of above $48,300 touched on Thursday.
Elon Musk’s electric-car company Tesla revealed on Monday that it had bought $1.5 billion of bitcoin and planned to start accepting it as payment.
The announcement sent bitcoin soaring to a record high of above $48,000. The coin had been hovering below $40,000 for much of the previous two weeks.
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On Thursday, bitcoin jumped to a new high of above $48,300 after BNY Mellon and Mastercard both warmed to cryptocurrencies.
Mastercard announced it will allow merchants to accept select cryptocurrencies on its network starting later this year. And Bank of New York Mellon said it will issue, hold, and transfer bitcoin for clients in the future.
The announcements appear to have boosted other crypto assets such as Ripple’s XRP and Ethereum’s ether.
Ether, the native cryptocurrency on the Ethereum network, was roughly flat at $1,793 on Bitstamp on Friday morning. But it was not far off a record high of more than $1,800 reached earlier in the week.
‘Meme’ cryptocurrency dogecoin was down around 7% to $0.068, however.
“It does appear that [XRP network] Ripple, like many others, are riding the bitcoin wave,” said Craig Erlam, senior market analyst at currency firm Oanda.
“Although it is significantly outperforming so far today. It does have a lot of lost ground to make up, so perhaps that may explain why it’s being targeted.
“There doesn’t seem to be much else behind the moves which should always be a concern, but that doesn’t mean it can’t make significantly more gains, as we’ve so often seen.”
The Ripple network’s cryptocurrency is wildly volatile. XRP soared and crashed in early February when a Reddit-organized buy-and-hold scheme appeared to fall apart after the price touched $0.74.
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