Meanwhile, in the Wild Wild West that is the increasingly ridiculous cryptocurrency space, Ripple is back above $2 after rebounding from a pretty dramatic selloff that saw the world’s second-largest digital coin drop 34% from the highs hit on December 30.
Looking at a 5-day chart shows the extent to which this is basically just a penny stock in terms of both price and how it trades:
Hilariously, the furious December rally saw Ripple’s “market cap” (a misnomer) rise to a truly outlandish $105 billion. It leapfrogged Ethereum in the process.
But as you’re probably aware by now, you can’t appreciate how truly absurd the Ripple rally is until you pan out to a one-year chart at which point you find out that a digital token with a literal fidget spinner for a logo rose 32,000% in 2017:
Not to put too fine a point on it, but that gives whole new meaning to the word “bubble.”
Well, that chart means that Cofounder and former CEO Chris Larsen is now worth something like $38 billion. Here’s Chris and his blue eyes:
And here’s Forbes to provide some perspective on that:
That would make him the 15th richest American on the 2017 Forbes 400 list as of Monday, tying him with Steve Ballmer, the former Microsoft CEO and current owner of the NBA’s Los Angeles Clippers. He ranks a bit ahead of Abigail Johnson, the CEO of Fidelity, who is herself a big cryptocurrency fan, plus hedge funder Ray Dalio and investor Carl Icahn, both of whom have made headlines for calling Bitcoin a bubble.
Larsen also cofounded and served as CEO of Prosper – that would be the peer-to-peer lending company that accidentally lent money to Syed Rizwan Farook, the San Bernardino shooter.
Meanwhile, current CEO Brad Garlinghouse is now worth about $9.5 billion, making him the 54th richest American.
As Forbes dryly notes, “the huge swings in the value of Ripple, Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies mean that there is no guarantee that any of these folks will still be billionaires when Forbes publishes its next list in March.”
Right. Hell, they might not even be on the list tomorrow. Then again, they might be twice as rich as Jeff Bezos by Friday. There’s no telling.