Bitcoin Prices Soar Above $4,700!
Prices of bitcoin soared further into record territory Tuesday, briefly trading above $4,700, as demand for the cryptocurrency, perceived by investors as a safer assets than fiat currencies, jumped following North Korea’s missile test over Japan.
One bitcoin BTCUSD, +5.45% was up 4.3% to $4,628, bringing its market capitalization to $76.4 billion. Since the start of the month, bitcoin has gained more than 60% and it is up about 360% so far this year, according to Coindesk.com.
Prices of Ether, the blockchain currency trading on Ethereum platform, also rose sharply, up nearly 5% at $364.85. Its total value is at about $34.4 billion. Despite recent rally, Ether is still below its all-time high $383.58, reached in June. Year to date, Ether is up more than 4,000% thus far in 2017.
The total value of the digital-currency universe tracked by data research site Coinmarketcap.com, including those linked to the Bitcoin, Ethereum and Ripple blockchain networks, reached a fresh record at about $164 billion.
Bitcoin’s run-up is unlike any other asset, according to analyst at Bespoke Investment Group.
In the attached chart, Bespoke analysts compared the price of Bitcoin from 2015, with other assets that enjoyed parabolic, or bubblelike, rises since 1990.
Climbing prices of cryptocurrencies have been in part fueled by interest from ordinary people as well as major Wall Street investors, who are attracted to cybercurrencies running on decentralized blockchain platforms.
The blockchain is the digital ledger that tracks each bitcoin transaction and underpins the currency.
Despite surging prices of bitcoin and other digital currencies, complaints against abuses are soaring as well.
The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau received 277 complaints about virtual currencies through August. In 2016, there were only seven, according to student loan marketplace LendEDU.
In the past, the regulator warned consumers that there may be potential issues with virtual currencies such as unclear costs, volatile exchange rates, the threat of hacking and scams.