The world’s best known cryptocurrency Bitcoin smashed its previous record on Thursday, soaring above $5,000 for the first time.
Bitcoin traded at $5,186 in morning trade, over five times its price of $966 at the start of the year. The price of Bitcoin is known for being volatile, sinking to below $3000 in September after the Chinese authorities cracked down on cryptocurrency exchanges.
“Speculators are bullish on bitcoin’s value with the anticipation of China’s reintegration with global crypto markets,” Aurelien Menant, CEO of cryptocurrency exchange Gatecoin, told CNBC by email.
Bitcoin allows quasi-anonymous trade across borders by bypassing banks and traditional currencies. There have, however, been concerns about its use for money laundering and crime, leading JP Morgan CEO Jamie Dimon to publicly condemn the currency as a “fraud”.