While many cryptocurrencies have hit tough times as of late, most namely Bitcoin, Litecoin is having an outstanding run. Two months ago, we told you how Litecoin could replace Bitcoin as the hot new cryptocurrency after experiencing explosive growth. Now Litecoin is rising yet again due to several factors that include a possibility of achieving widespread acceptance.
Litecoin is up more than 50% over the last week according to Coinbase at the time of publication. Litecoin’s value was at $109 on Feb. 2 and at the time of publication the price was at $218 according to Coinbase. Even for volatile cryptocurrencies, that is a remarkable jump. There are several factors for Litecoin’s recent swelling value.
Litecoin, which is the fifth largest digital currency by market capitalization, along with most other cryptocurrencies are rising thanks to good news in Europe. Mario Draghi, the president of the European Central Bank, said it’s not his institution’s job to regulate or ban cryptocurrencies.
Another catalyst for Litecoin’s rise is that a group of developers are planning to fork the Litecoin blockchain. Similar to when Bitcoin Cash forked from the Bitcoin network in 2017. The fork will give every holder of Litecoin 10 coins of “Litecoin Cash.” “With the fork in Litecoin Cash it seems to help miners use their equipment more efficiently,” said Iqbal Gandham, U.K. managing director at eToro. Gandham added that the new cash does not appear to have significant transactional advantages over the original coin. Developers of Litecoin Cash argue that the new digital currency will improve Litecoin’s “block speed.” Litecoin founder Charlie Lee had called the split a “scam” that is not supported or associated with the original Litecoin team. Lee, a former employee of Coinbase and Google, created Litecoin in October of 2011. In December, he sold and donated nearly all of his Litecoin holdings.
But the biggest and most exciting reason for Litecoin’s surge is the announcement of LitePay, a payment system compatible with Visa credit cards. On Wednesday, LitePay CEO Kenneth S. Asare said the new system “will have access to LitePay merchant payment processing.” The payments processor for the cryptocurrency is set to launch on Feb. 26 in 41 countries including the U.S., U.K., China, Japan, and Germany. The Litecoin Foundation is an investor in LitePay. “Our goal is to create a way for merchants to earn Litecoin, which is a particularly good cryptocurrency for payments,” Asare said.
This is a huge step in the legitimacy of Litecoin. Soon you will be able to use Visa-branded debit cards to allow millions of businesses to easily accept Litecoin payments. Litecoin now becomes the most practical cryptocurrency because a LitePay card would convert payments from Litecoin into local currency such as the U.S. dollar. Plus, you’ll be able to convert Litecoin into cash at an ATM, which paves the way for Litecoin to possibly achieve widespread acceptance.