Bitcoin, the worldâ€™s largest cryptocurrency, topped $34,000, just weeks after passing another major milestone.
The currency gained as much as 7.8 per cent to $34,182.75, before slipping to about $33,970 as of 3:05 p.m. on Sunday in Singapore. It advanced almost 50 per cent in December, when it breached $20,000 for the first time.
The latest gains top an eye-popping rally for the controversial digital asset in 2020, which rebounded sharply after a severe crash in March that saw it lose 25 per cent amid the coronavirus pandemic.
The currency â€œwill be on the road to $50,000 probably in the first quarter of 2021,â€ said Antoni Trenchev, managing partner and co-founder of Nexo in London, which bills itself as the worldâ€™s biggest crypto lender. Institutional investors returning to their desks this week will likely boost prices further after retail buying over the holidays, he said.
Bitcoin has increasingly been â€œembraced in more global investment portfolios as holders expand beyond tech geeks and speculators,â€ Bloomberg Intelligence commodity strategist Mike McGlone wrote in a note last month. Proponents of the currency have also seized on the narrative that the coin could act as a store of wealth amid supposed rampant central-bank money printing, even as inflation remains mostly muted.
Bitcoin should eventually climb to about about $400,000, Scott Minerd, chief investment officer of Guggenheim Investments, told Bloomberg Television in a December 16 interview.
Still, there are reasons to be cautious, partly since Bitcoin remains a thinly traded market. The currency slumped as much as 14 per cent on November 26 amid warnings that the asset class was overdue a correction. The big run-up in price in 2017 was followed by an 83 per cent rout that lasted a year.
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