One of the oldest cryptocurrencies and one of the largest by market cap, XRP may be considered less mainstream than, say, Bitcoin or even the altcoin Solana, but its dedicated fans, dubbed the XRP Army, fervently advocate for the token—in both good times and bad.
And on Monday, many of them suffered whiplash.
A report by The Block of a BlackRock-backed XRP fund triggered a nearly 13% price spike before it was determined to be based on a falsified document. The fake filing, for a supposed “iShares XRP Trust,” was found on Delaware’s state website for listing investment trusts that are incorporated by the state. But, as confirmed by Bloomberg, BlackRock didn’t create the filing, and as of Tuesday it remained unclear how it was created and posted.
Almost immediately after the news was debunked, XRP shed those gains, and on Tuesday was trading at about 64 cents, down less than 3% over 24 hours, according to CoinGecko.
It’s the second time in less than a month that a fake announcement, amplified by Crypto Twitter, fueled a massive rally: CoinTelegraph posted an announcement on X, formerly Twitter, claiming that the SEC had approved BlackRock’s application to create a spot Bitcoin ETF. The news was quickly debunked, but it still pushed Bitcoin above the $30,000 mark.
Each is reminiscent of an instance from 2021 when a fake press release claiming Walmart would begin accepting Litecoin shot the little-known crypto token up 33% before the company cleared things up.
Despite Monday’s false start, XRP is still up almost 30% over the last 30 days and more than 67% year over year, according to CoinGecko.
Recent positive news for Ripple, the company associated with the token, has helped lift its price. Earlier this year, the firm notched a victory against the SEC after a judge ruled XRP was not a security in all instances. The SEC later dropped charges it had filed against two Ripple executives, CEO Brad Garlinghouse and executive chairman and cofounder Chris Larsen.
Any further developments, such as an appeal by either Ripple or the SEC, are likely far away. Crypto-focused attorney Fred Rispoli said in a post on X that a ruling on an appeal would have “no chance” of being approved until 2026.
Still, some investors are hopeful that a settlement between Ripple and the regulator could come sooner and push XRP’s price up further. Others have speculated that the fake BlackRock filing was merely posted early and it could still materialize, although there is no evidence to support such a claim.
— CryptoGeek (@CryptoGeekNews) November 14, 2023
— Collin Brown (@CollinBrownXRP) November 14, 2023
For now, investors in XRP and other cryptocurrencies alike are closely watching the SEC’s impending approval of a spot Bitcoin ETF, which Bloomberg analysts say has a 90% chance by early January.