Coinbase Rejects Ripple Integration Rumors, Currency’s Market Cap Drops $22 Billion
The popular exchange and wallet platform Coinbase has refuted recent rumors that Ripple (XRP) or other cryptocurrencies will soon be integrated into GDAX, its flagship digital currency exchange.
CEO Brian Armstrong firmly stated that neither Coinbase and GDAX have made a decision to integrate any cryptocurrency or digital asset in the short-term. The company said in a blog post:
“A committee of internal experts is responsible for determining whether and when new assets will be added to the platform in accordance with our framework. These individuals — and all employees at Coinbase — are subject to confidentiality and trading restrictions.
As of the date of this statement, we have made no decision to add additional assets to either GDAX or Coinbase. Any statement to the contrary is untrue and not authorized by the company.”
Coinbase’s statement was released following a spate of unverified rumors that claimed GDAX is planning to integrate XRP. The scale of the rumors, which largely circulated on Reddit and Twitter, increased to the point where the company felt the need to refute them, as the price of XRP surged.
Immediately after Coinbase issued its statement, the market valuation of XRP decreased from over $148 billion to $126 billion.
Insider trading controversy
Coinbase and GDAX are unlikely to integrate any new assets until they can be certain to prevent any leaks. In early December, when Coinbase added Bitcoin Cash, a Coinbase employee or a contractor reportedly revealed the integration two days prior to the official announcement.
Coinbase received significant backlash and criticism from the cryptocurrency community and as a consequence, Armstrong vowed to launch a full investigation. The CEO stated that Coinbase will pursue legal action against the employee or contractor that released confidential information on the company’s digital asset integration plans.
As such, the recent statement of Armstrong and rumors around Coinbase’s Ripple integration were also criticized by some of the community’s most prominent experts. These include BitGo lead engineer Jameson Lopp, who tweeted:
We haven't made any decisions to add new assets to Coinbase or GDAX at this time. Any statement to the contrary is untrue. Be careful what you believe out there! https://t.co/1yUYG33AoG
— Brian Armstrong (@brian_armstrong) January 4, 2018
No new assets yet
The investigation into the Bitcoin Cash controversy is still ongoing and until that is completed, it is highly unlikely that Coinbase will pursue the implementation of other cryptocurrencies. The company’s CEO admitted that some insider trading-like movement was spotted in the global Bitcoin Cash exchange market prior to the listing of Coinbase.
On December 20, Armstrong wrote:
“Given the price increase in the hours leading up the announcement, we will be conducting an investigation into this matter. If we find evidence of any employee or contractor violating our policies — directly or indirectly — I will not hesitate to terminate the employee immediately and take appropriate legal action.”
Former Coinbase executive Charlie Lee also stated:
“Coinbase is not adding a new coin anytime soon. There's no reason why they would lie about this... Especially after the flack they got for surprising everyone by adding BCH.”