REUTERS: The digital currency Bitcoin extended its record rally on Saturday (January 2), starting the year with a rise of over $ 30,000 for the first time, with more traders and investors betting that it is fast becoming a mainstream payment method.
The price of the world’s most popular cryptocurrency hit US $ 33,099 on Saturday, with almost all other markets closed in the first weekend of 2021. It lasted around 12% to US $ 32,883.
Bitcoin rose more than 300% in 2020, and with the last leg higher, it has added more than 50% since breaking through $ 20,000 just two weeks ago.
Blockchain currency has only been around for about a decade, and in 2020 it saw increased demand from large U.S. investors, drawn by its perceived qualities as an inflation hedge and potential for quick wins. , as well as the expectations that it would become a current payment. method.
Investors said the limited supply of bitcoin – produced by so-called “mining” computers that validate blocks of transactions by competing to solve mathematical puzzles – has helped ramp up in recent days.
Some also saw it as a safe haven game during the COVID-19 pandemic, similar to gold.
“It is very likely that the asset will eventually exceed $ 100,000 per coin,” Sergey Nazarov, co-founder of Chainlink, a global blockchain project, wrote on Saturday. “People have gradually lost confidence in their government’s currency for years, and monetary policies resulting from the economic impact of the coronavirus have only accelerated this decline.”
It trades on many exchanges, the largest of which is Coinbase, which is preparing itself to go public and become the first such platform to be listed on Wall Street.
Several competing cryptocurrencies use similar blockchain or electronic ledger technology. Ethereum, the second largest, gained 465% in 2020 and rose nearly 7% on Saturday.