The Bitcoin is scaling a new peak each passing day. After crossing a record $12,000 in valuation just yesterday, the cryptocurrency touched a new high of over $14,000 today. That is a near 40 percent in this month, and an eleven-fold rise since the year began. Bitcoin is now valued at $14,399.99, according to Bloomberg. It now has a market cap of $236 billion and accounts for over 60 percent of the overall cryptocurrency market. Its distant rival, Ethereum, that is trading at $400 holds about a 13 percent share.
Bitcoin’s unprecedented rally has been attributed to a potential institutional investment in the currency. ASX Ltd., the primary exchange operator for equities and derivatives in Australia, today said that it would start using blockchain to process equity transactions. Blockchain is the digital ledger software code that powers Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. It is believed that blockchain technology could “change everything”. “You should be taking this technology as seriously as you should have been taking the development of the Internet in the early 1990s,” Blythe Masters, CEO of Digital Asset Holdings (a blockchain startup), recently announced.
Bitcoin’s value is also said to have been boosted by the emergence of the Lightning Labs — a solution-provider that can make Bitcoin payments viable. It is aimed at making the cryptocurrency more scalable and democratic. Its technology would be able to reduce transactions on the blockchain platform by allowing buyers and sellers to transact privately. They can even broadcast their Bitcoin activity to any public network later. However, privacy concerns ought to be taken into account.
Prominent fund managers are also pouring in money into the Bitcoin as it slowly becomes a legitimate currency. But there is no dearth of naysayers either. There are constant warnings about the Bitcoin Bubble that is soon likely to pop. No currency that has soared 1,300 percent (and counting) in less than 12 months is likely to sustain this growth for the time being. But before Bitcoin goes bust, it is making millionaires — and a few billionaires too — out of its early backers. Perhaps 2013 was the best time to have invested in Bitcoin!