- Bitcoin on Tuesday topped $US8,000 a coin for the first time since July.
- The cryptocurrency has now gained 119% this year.
- One analyst attributes this year’s surge to more people using the network.
- Watch bitcoin trade live.
Bitcoin is having a monster year.
The cryptocurrency was trading up more than 3% near $US8,065 a coin on Tuesday morning, at its best level since July. Bitcoin has now gained 119% in 2019 and has a market capitalisation of $US142 billion, according to CoinMarketCap.com.
This year’s start is a big reversal from 2018, which saw bitcoin’s value plunge to nearly $US3,000 a coin from nearly $US14,000. At its 2017 peak of almost $US20,000, the digital coin commanded a market cap of more than $US327 billion.
While there are many theories as to the reason for bitcoin’s revival, such as its being viewed as a safe haven and there being an exodus from alternative coins, Mati Greenspan, a senior market analyst at eToro, says the reason for they cryptocurrency’s comeback is clear.
“There are literally dozens of reasons for bitcoin to be surging right now but the important thing to remember is the main driver of this rally is increased adoption,” he told Business Insider in an email. “Plain and simple.”
Greenspan says all you need to do is look at the past 24 hours for evidence. He specifically pointed to Microsoft announcing the adoption of the bitcoin blockchain for online security, the Spend app unveiling plans to bring crypto payments to major retailers, and HTC saying it’s building a phone to run a bitcoin full node.
On top of that, bitcoin futures are seeing record volume at the CME Group. The brokerage TD Ameritrade in December introduced the trading of bitcoin futures, and the rivals Fidelity and E-Trade have plans to bring crypto trading to their platforms later this year.
“More people are using the network,” Greenspan added, “and that’s translating into higher prices.”
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