About Ripple & Where To Trade It

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Cryptocurrencies can widely fluctuate in prices and are not appropriate for all investors. Trading cryptocurrencies is not supervised by any EU regulatory framework. Your capital is at risk.

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What is Ripple?

Ripple is a digital currency that has spiked significantly in value in early 2o18, and has several fundamental differences to Bitcoin. Before we explain those differences, let’s first explore what it is used for.

Ripple was launched in 2012, and – unlike bitcoin – is under the control of one company, Ripple Inc, based in San Francisco. It set out with the aim of improving global payments, and differentiates itself from other digital currency platforms through its strong relationship with the banks. Santander, UBS and Bank of America are companies already using the platform, and companies in Japan and South Korea have also recently come on board.

Ripple’s aim is to be a global settlement network; a platform to allow anyone to transfer money in any currency to any currency in a matter of seconds, and at a fraction of the cost.

Why the big fuss?

Currently, cross-border transactions require many intermediaries to execute. At every step, there’s a cost and a delay involved. So when Betty’s sending £200 to her daughter in Australia, it takes a few days to get there, and incurs high transaction costs along the way.

Ripple enables banks to send money to and from each other within seconds, and without the need for any intermediaries. It provides the banks with end-to-end visibility throughout the whole process, and transaction costs are kept to a minimum.

So it is a disruptor technology that has the potential to transform the way cross-border transactions are carried out. If Ripple wins, the days of Western Union and SWIFT are over.

And it doesn’t stop with just money transfers…Money is just the first unit of value that this technology can handle. When you send a unit of value (eg GBP) across the network, it is first converted into XRP (the Ripple currency) before being converted into the recipient’s unit of value (eg AUD). In the example of Betty, above, her GBP are converted first to XRP, and from there to AUD. Because XRP acts as the “currency of last resort”, it can act as the bridge between any currency or item of value.

What can I buy with Ripple?

It was never the goal to use XRP as a payment method. Instead the aim has always been to use XRP to grease the wheels, as that “currency of last resort”, in order to make fiat money transfers easier, faster and more secure.

That said, several merchants are starting to accept Ripple, including hosting providers and vaping product merchants. A full list can be found on the XRP forum here.

Where can I buy, sell or trade Ripple?

We recommend you buy, sell or trade Ripple through a trusted broker. Our favourite is at the top of this page. You can read our reviews of the top brokers here.

Caution: Trading involves the possibility of financial loss. Only trade with money that you are prepared to lose, you must recognise that for factors outside your control you may lose all of the money in your trading account.

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