Bitcoin is making waves globally as it broke through the psychologically important $1,000 barrier on several large exchanges today Sunday, 1 January. It had already broken all-time highs in several currencies as global bitcoin exchanges reported record-setting monthly volume. Bitcoin’s price has increased more than 120% since the start of 2016 alone.
Bitcoin’s exchange rate versus the US dollar crossed the $1,000 mark first on the online exchange Bitfinex on Sunday evening GMT. Shortly, that line was crossed also at Bitstamp, after the exchange rate had reached 1005 USD per bitcoin at Bitfinex and 1000+USD per bitcoin at Kraken and Coinbase among other sites.
Bitcoin’s new highs also meant a new market capitalization record above 16 billion USD and an 87.8% dominance compared to all other coins, on Coinmarketcap. The last time Bitcoin hit $1,000/USD was in November 2013, amid wholly different circumstances.
Bitcoin did surpass the $1,000/USD mark in Chinese yuan terms as Chinese volume hit record highs already back in December, but did not cross that mark on large “western” exchanges like Bitfinex, Bitstamp and Kraken until Sunday. Analysts theorize that Chinese capital has moved into bitcoin to get around capital controls and a devaluing yuan.
Bitcoin also broke all-time record highs in euros around the Christmas holidays, as well as the all-time high in Brazilian reals, according to data provided by Mercado Bitcoin.
Amid the December excitement, Barry Silbert, founder/CEO of Digital Currency Group, tweeted that “it’s happening,” assumedly referring to global adoption.
Best part of having invested in 19 bitcoin exchanges around the world is we get to see their monthly volumes…
Folks, it is happening
— Barry Silbert (@barrysilbert) December 28, 2016
In the Middle East, Bitoasis tweeted that December had already broken the exchange’s monthly volume records. “December has been our best month yet since launch,” tweeted Ola Doudin from BitOasis, a Bitcoin exchange based in Dubai. “We broke new daily volume records…”
In Mexico, Mexico bitcoin exchange Bitso reported new records as Bitcoin soared passed 20,000 pesos. “Another monthly record for @Bitso! More transaction volume this December than 2014 & 2015 combined,” tweeted Pablo Gonzalez, Bitso CEO.
A More Mature Market
Bitcoin has only gained more legitimacy since its 2013 record price run. Not only are massive financial institutions and multinational corporations researching and developing systems in part inspired by Bitcoin’s blockchain, but Wall Street hedge funds trade Bitcoin itself today, as well.
The 2013 rally took place amid thin trading volumes. For example, just 7 million bitcoins changed hands among traders in December 2013. 113 million coins have traded hands so far in December 2016.
Although well-known figures in the cryptocurrency space have suggested the mainstream media is oblivious to bitcoin’s price gains, others note that much discussion about the recent price rise focuses just on how high the price will go.
“The media continues to speculate what the reasons for the rise might be, but enthusiasts already know,” a senior market analyst at trading platform eToro, Mati Greenspan, told Business Insider on Wednesday. “They’re simply speculating about how high it will go.”
On CNBC’s Closing Bell December 28, analysts discussed if Bitcoin was the new gold; i.e. a new ‘safe haven’ asset, a type of instrument generally seen as protecting one’s portfolio from economic uncertainty.
Now that Bitcoin has crossed the $1,000 threshold, conversation around the cryptocurrency as a new safe haven is sure to continue.
Why is the Bitcoin price increasing in your opinion? Let us know in the comments section below.
Images Courtesy of Shutterstock, Twimg, and Travis Scher
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