Bitcoin Hits A New Record, Trades Above $66,000
Bitcoin rallied to a record, topping $66,000 for the first time, as optimism surged for greater mainstream acceptance in the wake of the successful launch of the first exchange-traded fund for U.S. investors.
While the historically volatile digital currency spent recent days hovering in a narrow range as it approached its previous April high, the vault above happened much faster: the price added more than a thousand dollars in a minute just after the open of stock exchanges in the U.S. Big moves tied to significant chart levels have been a common phenomenon in the little more than a decade history of cryptocurrency trading.
“It’s a validating moment,” said Jesse Proudman, co-founder and chief executive at Makara, a crypto advisory firm. “It’s no longer a question of does this asset class continue to exist — I think that’s a really meaningful mark in the history of the broader digital-asset class.”
Bitcoin has climbed to its latest high atop a tide of pandemic-era liquidity, speculative bets and expectations of wider adoption by institutional investors. The ride was volatile: the token plunged below $30,000 in June amid criticism of its energy consumption and China’s cryptocurrency crackdown. It then began to recover in part as the crypto sector adjusted to China’s broadsides.
Amid all the price hysteria, many quarters of the Wall Street establishment nurse a deep skepticism about Bitcoin’s role in finance. Securities regulators are stepping up their scrutiny of cryptocurrency, with the U.S. government effectively blocking a Bitcoin lending program at Coinbase Global Inc. Critics have also cast doubt on claims the asset’s scarcity makes it a long-term store of value and note its slow uptake as a unit of exchange.
Bitcoin rose 4.1% to $66,722 as of 10:45 a.m. in New York, bringing its gain for the year to almost 130%. The largest digital currency by market gained more than 300% last year and 95% in 2019, after tumbling 73% the previous year.