After years of waiting, Coinbase has finally decided to add support for XRP on Coinbase Pro. This surprising decision aroused the euphoria of many, sparking an increase in trading volume and of course a peak in the price of the Ripple’s token.
However, many users, traders, and researchers also shared their suspicions that there might be some ulterior motive behind this decision. For a long time, the controversy over the possibility of XRP being a security and Coinbase’s hermeticism had prevented this from happening despite intense pressure from the community.
With this in mind, and with no significant change in its infrastructure or the legal framework or Coinbase’s terms and conditions, such a swift approval caused several users to share different “conspiracy theories” about this fact.
Is Coinbase Acting Suspiciously?
First of all, those who consider that there is something behind this unusual event point out that perhaps there is an interest on the part of Coinbase.
A recently released report by Diar, suggests that Coinbase deliberately listed XRP on its platform even though the token explicitly violates one of the conditions stipulated by the Exchange for accepting a token.
“Coinbase has now clearly abandoned one of their own pillars for the potential listing of a cryptocurrency. In their ‘Digital Asset Framework’ that outlines requirements to be listed, the exchange states that “the ownership stake retained by the team is a minority stake,” a fact far from reality as Ripple holds nearly 60% of the supply in escrow with a release schedule.
They explain that the reason for ignoring their own conditions could be related to the fact that Coinbase has lately listed all the cryptocurrencies that its own investor “Digital Currency Group” has backed up.
However, most community members who talk about a conspiracy believe that there was insider trading by the Exchange. They explain that those who knew that XRP would be listed bought large quantities of the token, which they sold after the announcement taking advantage of the price pump.
One of those who believe this theory is the twitter user Crypto Bitlord, who explains in a graph how the price of token evolved, telling that there was an unusual purchasing volume just before the news, followed by a large green candle that evidently would not be maintained in time.
Also, Weiss Cryptocurrency Ratings noted that although an “Internal investigation yielded no results.” Just 4 hours before the announcement, XRP experienced an unusual rise. In a survey filled by more than 840 people, 74% of respondents said they believe it could be insider trading.
4 hours prior to the announcement of the #XRP listing, crypto spiked 3.5%. Now the rumors have surfaced concerning the possible XRP ‘insider trading’ among #Coinbase employees. Internal investigation yielded no results. What do you think – Did they do it?
— Weiss Crypto Ratings (@WeissCrypto) February 27, 2019
Or… Should We Blame Ripple?
Alternatively, another group believes that in reality, Ripple was the one to blame. According to this theory, the company would have paid Coinbase to list XRP even though the token does not meet the standards set by the exchange.
One such thinker is Alistair Milne, CIO of Altana Digital Currency Fund. In a first tweet, he explains that he asked Coinbase to clarify the doubt; however, Coinbase replied that they are only willing to answer him privately, something that would prevent him from sharing the answer with the public.
Did Ripple pay Coinbase for their token being listed?
"we're not discussing publicly"#xrp #youregoddamnrighttheydid pic.twitter.com/cuuxWGt6ch
— Alistair Milne (@alistairmilne) February 26, 2019
This behavior had already been reported by Bloomberg in April last year. According to the article, Ripple had tried to pay Gemini and Coinbase to list their XRP token.
Miguel Vias, Head of XRP Markets, responded to Milne, commenting that Coinbase’s decisions are autonomous and that RIpple did not participate in any way. He also emphasized the position that Ripple does not own the XRP token.
However, this decision was not enough for Milne (and the rest of the users who share his opinion).
Has there been *any* transfer of assets between Ripple and Coinbase in the past year or so? Of any sort (loan, donation, deposit, etc.)?
Extremely hard to believe Ripple offered $100mil of assets and then Coinbase decided to receive 0 benefit https://t.co/O9KETqsQuS
— Alistair Milne (@alistairmilne) February 27, 2019
Until now, no official statements have been released by Ripple or Coinbase adressing these accusations.