Stellar (XLM) Leads Crypto Markets Back Above $140 Billion

Crypto markets pivoted higher Tuesday, with Stellar (XLM) leading the rally after IBM confirmed it was launching a global payments network on the XLM blockchain. Bitcoin (BTC) was a source of renewed stability as the price clawed back above $4,000.

Crypto Market Update

A majority of the top 20 cryptocurrencies reported modest gains through the early morning session. Stellar’s XLM currency outperformed its peers, rising 5.6% to $0.1149. XLM peaked near 12 cents on Monday, its highest level since January.

With the gain, the Stellar blockchain came within $15 million of Binance Coin (BNB) for seventh spot on the crypto market cap index. In terms of BNB, the native token of the Binance exchange rose 1% to $15.74.

All five of the major large-caps printed gains of at least 0.6%, according to CoinMarketCap. Litecoin (LTC) was back above $60, EOS (EOS) traded at $3.77 and XRP (XRP) was approaching 32 cents. Ethereum (ETH) was also trading north of $140.00.

Bitcoin’s price was last seen trading at $4,056.00, according to aggregate data from CoinMarketCap. With a market cap of $71.4 billion, bitcoin’s dominance rate has improved to 50.9%. It briefly fell below 50% earlier this month for the first time since the summer.

The total cryptocurrency market capitalization peaked just shy of $140.7 billion on Tuesday, putting it within range of the February high.

Stellar-IBM Partnership Goes Live

IBM, one of Stellar’s longest running partners, announced Monday that it has signed on six banks to pioneer its World Wire payment network. The network, which is run on Stellar’s public blockchain and uses the XLM cryptocurrency, allows financial institutions to issue their own stablecoins for cross-border payments.

So far, only Stronghold’s dollar-backed token has been approved to run on the network. Stronghold’s token is currently in “limited production” on World Wire, according to Jesse Lund, IBM’s head of blockchain for financial services. However, the network will soon expand its services, including a U.S. “operating endpoint” sometime this year.

At the time of its launch, World Wire has payment locations in 72 countries along with 48 currencies and 46 endpoints, which essentially serve as money transmitters. Through these endpoints, people can send and receive cash.
So far, three of the six banks to participate in World Wire have been identified. They include the Philippines-based RCBC, Brazil’s Banco Bradesco and Bank Busan of South Korea.

Last month, JPMorgan Chase & Co announced it had developed a stablecoin to boost liquidity and instant money transfers for its $6 trillion per day payment market. Like Stronghold, ‘JPM Coin’ is a stablecoin that has a fixed value pegged to the U.S. dollar. Read more: Jamie Dimon Gets Crypto Fever as JPMorgan Develops Stablecoin; Bitcoin Fundamental Improve.

In an official press release, JPMorgan said: “We have always believed in the potential of blockchain technology and we are supportive of cryptocurrencies as long as they are properly controlled and regulated.”

Disclaimer: The author owns Bitcoin, Ethereum and other cryptocurrencies. He holds investment positions in the coins, but does not engage in short-term or day-trading.

Featured image courtesy of Shutterstock.

Chief Editor to and Contributor to, Sam Bourgi has spent the past nine years focused on economics, markets and cryptocurrencies. His work has been featured in and cited by some of the world's leading newscasts, including Barron's, CBOE and Forbes. Avid crypto watchers and those with a libertarian persuasion can follow him on twitter at @hsbourgi