Spread bets and CFDs are complex instruments and come with a high risk of losing money rapidly due to leverage. 75% of retail investor accounts lose money when trading spread bets and CFDs with this provider. You should consider whether you understand how spread bets and CFDs work, and whether you can afford to take the high risk of losing your money. Spread bets and CFDs are complex instruments and come with a high risk of losing money rapidly due to leverage.

How to trade ripple

Find out everything you need to know about how to trade ripple (XRP) – including how the cryptocurrency works, what affects its price, the difference between trading and investing, and four steps to opening your first position.

Cryptocurrency trading is only available to professional traders.
Find out more about our professional account

Bitcoin’s boom in 2017 brought many other cryptocurrencies into the limelight. One of those was ripple, a payment solution that comes with its own digital currency called XRP. If you’re a professional trader and you'd like to start trading XRP, then follow these three steps:

  1. Decide how you’d like to trade ripple
  2. Find out how ripple works
  3. Explore the factors that influence its price

Ways to deal ripple

The first step to dealing ripple is deciding how to take a position on its price movements. There are two main ways:

  • Buying ripple on an exchange and holding it in the hope that the price increases. You won’t need a professional account to do this, but you will need a digital wallet and an account with a crypto exchange
  • Trading cryptocurrency derivatives like spread bets or CFDs to speculate on ripple’s price rising or falling – but this is only available to professional traders and you won’t own the tokens directly

Learn more about the different cyptocurrencies and how they compare to each other

Spread betting and CFDs both enable professional traders to open leveraged trading positions on ripple, as well as bitcoin, ether, litecoin and more. Here’s a quick introduction to how both work.

Ripple spread betting

When you trade XRP via spread betting, you are placing a bet on whether its price is headed up or down. As ripple moves in your chosen direction, you earn profit. If it moves against you, you make loss.

Find out more about spread betting

Ripple CFDs

A CFD is a contract in which you agree to exchange the difference in price of XRP from when you opened your position to when you close it. You can buy CFDs to go long, or sell them to go short.

Find out more about CFD trading

But, remember that only professional traders can trade cryptocurrency with spread bets and CFDs. Find out more about our professional account.

How does ripple work?

Ripple works as a decentralised peer-to-peer payment network of gateways (called RippleNet) that enables the almost-instant transfer of any currency – whether a traditional one such as USD, JPY or GBP, or a cryptocurrency such as bitcoin or litecoin. It does this by using its own digital currency (XRP) as a bridge that underpins the network.

A public ledger keeps track of all the payments made using RippleNet. Transactions are approved by consensus, so there’s no central authority slowing things down.

What are gateways?

Gateways are the intermediaries between banks (and other institutions) on RippleNet, which take money from one party and release it to another once the transaction has been approved. Gateways can also exchange one currency for another – if a gateway is prepared to accept dollars and pay out in sterling, for instance.

By chaining multiple gateways together, RippleNet can convert almost any currency in a transaction. You can even use it to transfer (and exchange) commodities like gold.

What about XRP?

Gateways will always price anything they deal in XRP. This means that you can use it as the basis for any transaction: converting currency into XRP, transferring it, and then converting it back at the other end. XRP is also transferred immediately and very cheaply (because it requires fewer gateways).

What moves ripple’s price?

Ripple functions in a markedly different way to other cryptocurrencies, and was never intended to be a replacement for fiat currency. Because of this, there are a lot of unique factors affecting the price movements of XRP.

XRP supply

Unlike other cryptocurrencies, XRP isn’t produced by mining. Instead, the company behind ripple completely controls supply. This gives them a lot of control over ripple’s price – which has some traders worried.

Public perception

Ripple is often referred to as the world’s most misunderstood cryptocurrency. Much of its rise in 2017 was due to investors believing it could be a challenger to bitcoin and others, as opposed to a global payment solution.

Bank adoption of ripple

Ripple’s key users are banks and other major institutions. With Bank of America, Royal Bank of Canada and UBS among those already on board, announcements that more companies are adopting the technology see XRP’s profile raised further.

Other cryptocurrencies

Investors looking for the next big cryptocurrency can see XRP’s large market cap and low cost per coin as a buying opportunity – so when the digital currency market is rallying, ripple may follow. But if the market turns bearish, XRP could drop fast.

If XRP is added to an exchange

If a major cryptocurrency exchange such as Coinbase announces that it is listing XRP, then millions of prospective buyers would have access to the currency. That could see ripple’s price spike.

Discover cryptocurrency trading with IG

Sign up for our free three-part cryptocurrency guide.

  • The brief but exciting history of cryptocurrencies

  • The factors that drive cryptocurrency prices

  • The differences between trading physically and on leverage

  • How to get started with IG

Form has failed to submit. Please contact IG directly.

  • I’d like to receive information from IG Group companies about trading ideas and their products and services via email.

Get my guide

For more info on how we might use your data, see our privacy notice and access policy and privacy webpage.

FAQs

Under FCA rules, only professional traders can trade cryptocurrency with derivatives like spread bets and CFDs. Learn more about professional trading and check your eligibility on our professional account page.

No. When you trade ripple with IG, you never have to deal directly with an exchange. Instead, we source prices from multiple exchanges on your behalf, and then offer you the best available price (plus our spread).

If you want to buy XRP and own it over the long term, then you will need an exchange account.

With IG, you can trade ripple from 8am on Saturday through to 10pm on Friday (London time). Our XRP market is 24 hours, so the market won’t close between those hours.

However, holidays may affect these times.

You can spread bet or trade CFDs on bitcoin and bitcoin cash, as well as ether, litecoin, EOS, stellar and NEO. On top of that, you can also trade over 17,000 other markets including shares, indices, forex and more.

The ticker symbol for the currency that underpins RippleNet is XRP

Yes, you can add trading alerts to any of the 17,000 markets you can trade with IG. On the IG Trading platform, you can do this by opening a deal ticket on ripple, and choosing the ‘alert’ tab. Set your parameters, and hit ‘set alert’ to save your settings.

Yes. We have trading apps for iPhone, iPad and Android, which you can use to trade ripple alongside our full range of markets.

Find out more about our trading apps

Try these next

  • Ripple trading

    Start trading XRP today, without ever owning any cryptocurrency

  • Trading cryptocurrencies

    Discover our full suite of cryptocurrencies: including bitcoin, ether and more

  • Our charges

    We're clear about our charges, so you always know what fees you will incur