The price of Bitcoin, the first decentralised cryptocurrency, exceeded $19,700 on Monday for the first time since its creation 11 years ago, boosted by its increasingly widespread use and by the risk appetite of the markets.
Around 3:20 PM GMT (4:20 PM in Brussels), the price of bitcoin rose by 8.2% to 19,761 dollars, after surpassing its previous record a few moments earlier, reaching 19,511 dollars on 18 December 2017, according to data compiled from several trading platforms by Bloomberg.
Bitcoin is up 175% since the beginning of the year, with a surge of more than 40% since 21 October, when online payment giant Paypal announced the launch of a service for buying, selling, and paying by cryptocurrency.
“We’re moving into unknown territory for prices, and this little boost could push the price even higher,” said Craig Erlam, an analyst at Oanda.
Created by anonymous individuals as a decentralised means of payment and adopted by investors who are keen to invest in alternative investments, Bitcoin has seen other spectacular rises and equally dizzying falls.
At its previous peak in 2017, the rise at that time was mainly among retail investors. In 2020, investment funds and major banks are now interested in cryptocurrency.
Bitcoin has also benefited in recent weeks from the wave of purchases on all markets, provoked by the economic stimulus measures put in place by central banks to counter the Covid-19 pandemic.
The star index of the New York Stock Exchange, the Dow Jones Industrial Average, thus surpassed 30,000 points last Tuesday for the first time in its existence before retreating, while the Nasdaq and the S&P had reached records on Friday.