XRP threatens to flip Binance’s cryptocurrency once and for all

BNB has been valued higher than XRP for most of the last two years, but the gap is narrowing fast


Binance coin and XRP, two of the largest cryptocurrencies on the market, are diverging.

Only $2 billion separates BNB and XRP’s market caps — now $35.7 billion to $33.2 billion. 

That puts XRP squarely in flipping distance: If BNB stays flat, XRP could firmly eclipse it with just an 8% price rally.

The two were way further apart at the start of the year. BNB’s market cap was more than double XRP’s back then — long before Changpeng Zhao’s forced resignation as CEO of Binance last week.

In fact, XRP briefly flipped BNB in July when a US federal court ruled Ripple’s XRP sales to retail weren’t securities. The news ballooned its price by 75% and once again made XRP the fourth-biggest cryptocurrency on the market, behind bitcoin (BTC), ether (ETH) and tether (USDT).

XRP — one of the oldest cryptocurrencies, initially issued in 2012 — had handed fourth place back to BNB by the next month. The token is the native asset of the Ripple Ledger — now stylized as the “XRP Ledger” — pitched as a low-cost intermediary asset cross-border remittances. 

BNB, on the other hand, is the native token for Binance Smart Chain, a network similar to Tron. The network supports its own bevy of tokens and applications, including typical cryptocurrencies, stablecoins, wrapped tokens, memecoins, decentralized exchanges and DeFi protocols. Traders can also use BNB to reduce trading fees on Binance.

XRP flipping BNB would be a return to the old normal

BNB first overtook XRP in February 2021, as the last bull market was picking up steam. Sans for a brief moment a few months later, BNB has been valued above XRP ever since.

All that could change for good if both cryptocurrencies keep their current trajectories. BNB has been retracing ever since its all-time high in November 2021 — now 67% below that point.

XRP meanwhile has been on the mend, now up by more than three quarters since it bottomed out in September. BNB is only up 6% across that time.

Granted, both cryptocurrencies face existential threats. While the US has dropped claims against Brad Garlinghouse and Chris Larsen, a jury trial in spring next year will decide whether Ripple’s XRP sales to hedge funds and other institutional investors violated securities law. 

Ripple’s future will stay in the balance until that matter is settled.

Binance’s problems are more pressing: it must fork out $4 billion to US authorities, its founder Zhao has been forced to step down and prosecutors are pushing for 18 months in prison for Bank Secrecy Act violations.

In response, BNB has sunk more than 10% since Zhao’s guilty pleas were confirmed last Tuesday. XRP is about even.

Granted, Binance is still the world’s largest crypto exchange by reported volume by far. 

But between the lost billions and the three-year market surveillance program forced on the exchange, the case for Binance losing ground to other prominent global platforms seems a lot stronger.

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