Bitcoin surpasses $8,000 to hit two-month high

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A collection of Bitcoin (virtual currency) tokens are displayed in this picture illustration, in Paris, France, December 8, 2017. Image: Reuters

LONDON

Bitcoin, the world’s best-known cryptocurrency, shot past US$8,000 yesterday for the first time in two months on signs of growing institutional interest in virtual coins.

Recent reports about impending approval in the United States for a cryptocurrency exchange traded fund (ETF) have helped bolster demand recently, as have comments by BlackRock’s Chief Executive Larry Fink last week that the world’s biggest investment firm was looking at cryptocurrencies.

Bitcoin rose to at high as US$8,130 on the Luxembourg-based Bitstamp exchange BTC=BTSP, its highest since May 22. The prices of other digital currencies also edged higher but most remain lower than a week ago, according to Coinmarketcap.com.

After peaking at close to US$20,000 in December, bitcoin has lost more than half its value in 2018 as institutional and retail interest has declined.

Reuters