According to Josh Frank of crypto-focused research company The TIE, the project is experiencing a collapse similar to some of the largest corporate scandals and catastrophes in recent years.
According to Cointelegraph, XRP’s market capitalization was nearly $140 billion in January 2018. Recently, it has slipped under $10 billion, an estimated loss of $130 billion in under three years. This makes the “collapse” of XRP third behind only the $327 billion bankruptcy of Washington Mutual and the failure of investment giant Lehman Brothers — a financial meltdown valued at $691 billion — in 2008.
Frank told Cointelegraph:
“It is sad and unfortunate that the biggest losers in the [XRP] saga are the individual investors who lost unimaginable amounts of money. The founders of Ripple continued to dump their tokens for years and made hundreds of millions of dollars.”
Following the news that the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commissions would charge Ripple, CEO Brad Garlinghouse and co-founder Chris Larsen with conducting an “unregistered, ongoing digital asset securities offering” for their XRP sales, the token price has dropped precipitousl. Crypto exchanges including Coinbase, Bittrex, OKCoin, Bitstamp, OSL, Beaxy, and CrossTower later announced they would suspend trading for XRP or delist the token entirely, providing additional bearish fuel.
Institutional players have started distancing themselves from XRP. Grayscale Investments’ website now says that its “XRP Trust private placement is currently closed” with one Twitter user stating the company would also no longer process pending applications for the XRP Trust.