The price of Bitcoin hit an all-time high on Wednesday, one day after the first Bitcoin futures exchange-traded fund (ETF) launched. At its height, the cryptocurrency was trading for $67,016.50, several thousand more than its $64,895.22 high in April. As of this writing, it’s currently trading around $66,000.
The reason Bitcoin is exploding right now is two-fold. The first is all about memes, groupthink, and rallying cries. The cryptocurrency dipped to around $28,000 over the summer amid fears that Washington would soon regulate decentralized financial markets. When the price went low, crypto enthusiasts encouraged others to “buy the dip,” believing as Bitcoiners often do that the price would inevitably bounce back and that around $30 grand for 1 BTC was a solid investment.
The second reason is the Tuesday launch of ProShares Bitcoin Strategy ETF on the New York Stock Exchange. The fund will let investors place bets on the future of Bitcoin without actually owning any of the cryptocurrency itself. It’s another step in the slow legitimization of cryptocurrency, once a niche item used mostly for black market purchases but increasingly viewed as a disruptive but legitimate financial product.
“2021 will be remembered for this milestone,” ProShares CEO Michael Sapir told The New York Times. Convenient access to Bitcoin in a wrapper that has market integrity.”
If you listen to tech investor and noted ghoul Peter Thiel, however, the price surge is a sign that America is crumbling. According to The Information, Thiel told a Monday night gathering of the Federalist Society that the rise in popularity of cryptocurrency was a sign that the U.S. political and financial system is dying.
“I don’t know that you should put all your money into Bitcoin at $60,000 a bitcoin right now,” Thiel said. “But surely the fact that it is at $60,000 is an extremely hopeful sign. It’s the canary in the coal mine. It’s the most honest market we have in the country, and it’s telling us that this decrepit… regime is just about to blow up.”
Regardless, some Bitcoiners are now anticipating that the price surge will continue. Besides the ProShares ETF, investment firm VanEck received SEC approval for its own Bitcoin futures ETF with permission to launch next week, and there’s more queued up: crypto investment firm Valkyrie even wants to call its ETF “BTFD,” or Buy the Fucking Dip.