Jed McCaleb, the co-founder of major cryptocurrencies Stellar and Ripple, is thought to be selling off his Ripple tokens (XRP) every day, earning some USD 100,000 now that XRP is in the midst of a huge rally.
When Ripple was founded, McCaleb received XRP 9 billion. In 2014, he announced his intentions to dump all of his XRP on the open market; this caused XRP’s price to crash 40% in 24 hours, and led to two years of litigation and ultimately an agreement for McCaleb to dump the tokens slowly over time. At first, McCaleb could sell USD 10,000 to USD 20,000 of XRP per week, but that agreement was modified in 2016 to allow McCaleb to sell 0.5% of XRP’s daily volume in the first year, and 0.75% in the second and third years. Now, McCaleb is earning more than USD 100,000 every day by selling his XRP holdings.
By the time McCaleb signed the modified agreement in 2016 to sell his share of XRP slowly to avoid damaging the market, he had already liquidated XRP 1.7 billion. Out of the remaining XRP 7.3 billion, he agreed to donate XRP 2 billion to a charity fund of his choice. The charity also has limits on the amount of tokens it can sell daily.
McCaleb has sold as much as XRP 752,000 in a day recently, ramping up from only XRP 40,000 per day in August. The price has been quite volatile, fluctuating between USD 0.27 and USD 0.65 during September 2018, so that volume netted between USD 200,000 and USD 500,000. Based on current trading volume for XRP in excess of USD 1 billion per day, McCaleb could sell millions of US dollars of tokens per day if he decided to.
Currently, XRP’s circulating supply is approaching 40 billion coins, with 60 billion not in circulation, most of which is in an XRP 55 billion escrow account controlled by Ripple. Ripple says it will dump up to 1 billion tokens per month out of this escrow account, but generally have only been selling 300 million per month, while unsold XRP from the escrow account is locked up in new contracts that expire 55 months later.
Ripple projects the supply will increase to 70 billion coins in five years and 90 billion XRP in 15 years, ultimately leveling off around XRP 95 billion long term. This drastic increase in supply over the coming years will apply continuous downwards pressure to the price.
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