Major cryptocurrency prices were moving higher Tuesday, led by XRP, the coin that runs on the Ripple protocol, which is showing double-digit gains in Tuesday trading.
Meanwhile, the underperformance of bitcoin, the No. 1 digital currency, has pushed its share of the overall cryptocurrency market to a 5-week low of 51.8%.
Bitcoin BTCUSD, +1.44% traded at $6,436.54, up 0.3% since Monday at 5 p.m. Eastern Time on the Kraken cryptocurrency exchange.
While equity markets continue to steal the headlines, one analyst said as we head into year-end an early Christmas present could be unfolding for owners of digital currencies.
“In traditional markets, it’s very common to see a stock rally leading up to the end of the year due to the increased activity in the private sector during the holidays. However, after a volatile October, combined with uncertainty surrounding Trump’s trade war and the Fed’s monetary policy, price action has been less than positive in the last few weeks,” wrote Mati Greenspan, senior market analyst at eToro.
“It may be too early to say this, after all we’ve only seen very moderate crypto gains this week, but it is very possible that we might see a Santa Claus rally in the crypto markets.”
XRP closing in on second place
XRP is leading altcoins, the cryptocurrencies other than bitcoin, higher Tuesday. Analysts are pointing to a break of its 200-day moving average, a closely watched technical indicator, for the surge, which has a single XRP XRPUSD, -1.44% coin trading at 54 cents, up 11.6%.
XRP is closing in on Ether for second place in the list of largest digital currencies. Its market cap was last at $21.8 billion, compared with Ether’s $22.3 billion.
Elsewhere, Ether ETHUSD, +1.94% was up 4.1% at $216.60, Bitcoin Cash BCHUSD, +2.41% was up 10.8% at $614.56 and Litecoin LTCUSD, +0.07% had gained 3.1% at $55.02.
The broad-based rally has the market cap for all cryptocurrencies at a three-week high of $218 billion, according to data from CoinMarketCap.
Bitcoin futures traded higher Tuesday. The Cboe Global Markets November contract XBTX8, +1.60% was up 0.1% at $6,425, while the CME Group November contract BTCX8, +1.64% had added 0.5% to $6,420.