While Bitcoin and Ethereum and other top cryptos appear to be twiddling thumbs again, at least one top 10 coin has surged today – XRP.

The XRP token is issued by the Ripple firm, a blockchain-based digital payment network and protocol, and has pumped by about 6% over the past 24 hours.

It’s also up 12% over the past week and nearly 20% over the past fortnight – significant gains for a token with one of the largest market cap valuations (US$27.2 billion).

Is there a reason for this surge? It’s a bit of an old story, this one, and it’s been wheeled out every time XRP’s gone on a little run over maybe the past six months or more.

Ripple is in an ongoing legal battle with the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) over a securities violation accusation by the regulator.

The growing hope is that the SEC vs Ripple lawsuit will be resolved soon, ending in a settlement that doesn’t, in fact, legally prove XRP hit the market as an unregistered security when Ripple sold about US$1.3 billion of the tokens about 10 years ago.

One prominent Ripple/XRP-friendly lawyer, John Deaton, is certainly bullish on a favourable Ripple outcome, and believes crypto traders and investors will soon be swept up in FOMO for the XRP token once it supposedly hits US$2 again.

(Note, it’s a long way off that figure at $0.52. The coin’s all-time high was US$3.40, reached more than five years ago now.)

Deaton also proffered his thoughts on the recent federal judge ruling that allows the use of what’s known as the “Hinman speech” in the case, along with relevant internal SEC communications regarding the contents of the speech.

That refers to a 2018 speech made by a former prominent SEC director, William Hinman, in which he noted that Ethereum (ETH) was not a security – a potentially strong precedent for the rest of the crypto industry.

Deaton, and many other XRP fans besides, seems to think it could be a significant moment and turning point in favour of Ripple in the case.

Still, not every observer seems to be down with Deaton on his bullish XRP thesis. Right, “Chinese Batman”?


Top 10 overview

With the overall crypto market cap at US$1.21 trillion, up about 0.4% since this time yesterday, here’s the current state of play among top 10 tokens – according to CoinGecko.

Regarding what’s been going on with Bitcoin just lately/this week, we grabbed a few takes from Josh Gilbert, a market analyst with eToro:

“Bitcoin has surged to a two-week high on the back of a potential deal struck by Republicans and Democrats to avoid a US debt ceiling default,” noted Gilbert, adding:

“Having traded below or around $27,000 for the past two weeks, bitcoin surged early this week to close to $28,000 as investors bought the news of a potential deal to avoid default disaster. The crypto asset is still below recent levels, however, as markets continue to tread carefully.”

Regarding both BTC and ETH, Gilbert noted that it remains to be seen whether either major crypto asset can truly begin to see some sustained momentum.

“The debt ceiling issue has certainly been leaving markets uncertain for several weeks now,” he said, “but there are still big questions in play around wider macroeconomic developments around interest rates and inflation.”

Bitcoin Ordinals pass 10 million

eToro’s Josh Gilbert also pointed to “the biggest phenomenon on the bitcoin blockchain in 2023” – Ordinals, which have now passed 10 million inscriptions. To understand what that means, we recommend reading this Kraken-led piece on the subject, or this recent Apollo’s Alpha.

“The process has underlined that innovation is still possible on the world’s largest blockchain and crypto asset,” said Gilbert. “Resolutions and new initiatives have popped up to cure some of the issues, a testament to the dynamism and ingenuity of many developers and market participants in the blockchain.”


China narrative kicking in?

Meanwhile, there are some tokens in the lists further below that have been dubbed “Chinese coins”, based on their popularity with Chinese traders, and/or because they have Chinese origins or connections. Coins such as Filecoin, Conflux, VeChain and Quant, for instance.

Regarding the potential for China to kickstart a crypto bull run, which is still a stupendously speculative idea at this stage, Gilbert said:

“The implications of a potential policy shift from the major Asian power could be profound for the crypto market if a loosening of control is on the cards.

“This is however a big ‘if’ – we have no real confirmation of the Chinese Government’s policy thinking on crypto. However, we do now have some insight into Web3 thinking as it has just published a white paper. The white paper recognises the relevance of Web3 as a future trend, but there is still much left to be guessed at in terms of crypto markets.”


Uppers and downers

Some of the biggest 24-hour gainers and losers at press time. (Stats accurate at time of publishing, based on CoinGecko.com data.)

PUMPERS (11-100 market cap position)

Filecoin (FIL), (market cap: US$2.06 billion) +5%

The Graph (GRT), (market cap: US$1.19 billion) +5%

Conflux (CFX), (market cap: US$680 million) +5%

Quant (QNT), (market cap: US$1.7 billion) +5%

VeChain (VET), (market cap: US$1.52 billion) +3%


PUMPERS (lower, lower caps)

Linear (LINA), (market cap: US$130 million) +36%

Tenet (TENET), (market cap: US$11 million) +34%

• SelfKey (KEY), (market cap: US$51 million) +24%



Pepe (PEPE), (market cap: US$543 million) -10%

IOTA (MIOTA), (mc: US$558 million) -5%

Kava (KAVA), (mc: US$587 million) -3%

• Optimism (OP), (mc: US$490 million) -2%

Sui (SUI), (mc: US$534 million) -2%


SLUMPERS (lower, lower caps)

Refund (RFD), (market cap: US$24 million) -32%

Ben (BEN), (market cap: US$43 million) -27%

• Lybra Finance (LBR), (market cap: US$20 million) -16%


Around the blocks

Some pertinence and randomness that stuck with us on our morning moves through the Crypto Twitterverse.