Bitcoin sure doesn’t look like a bubble. The price of one unit gained almost $800 in the space of just a few hours early Thursday, driving it to a new record high of $7,350.
The world’s most valuable digital currency, bitcoin has seen huge gains throughout 2017, particularly in recent months. It began the year trading at about $1,000, but wider adoption and investment in bitcoin-related companies has seen the price of the cryptocurrency soar.
According to the Coindesk Price Index, the value of bitcoin briefly reached a high of $7,350 before falling again to around $7,000 at 7 a.m. ET.
As is typical with bitcoin surges like this, there was no specific reason for the sudden price hike, but the bitcoin ecosystem was boosted this week when CME Group, the world’s largest exchange owner, said it plans to introduce bitcoin futures by the end of the year.
Despite sustained price rises throughout 2017, many skeptics remain convinced bitcoin is a bubble.
“It is simply remarkable how resilient bitcoin has been in the face of significant negativity,” said Lukman Otunuga, a research analyst at ForexTime, in a Nov. 1 note to clients. “The price action suggests that bulls have a very firm grip.”
It was just a month ago that bitcoin broke through the $5,000 mark and the continued price surge means the digital currency continues to act more like a stock than a traditional currency — making it difficult for bitcoin to be used to buy and sell items.
The surge means that bitcoin’s market capitalization is now over $115 billion. According to the CoinMarketCap website, bitcoin’s surge is not helping most other cryptocurrencies, which have seen their value drop in the last 24 hours.
In total the market capitalization of all 1,249 cryptocurrencies tracked by CoinMarketCap is around $190 billion.