Bitcoin has suddenly surged higher, climbing firmly above $60,000 per bitcoin for the first time since mid-March.
The bitcoin price hit highs of $61,222 on the Luxembourg-based Bitstamp exchange before falling back slightly, a rise of 5% on the last 24 hours. Meanwhile, ethereum, the second-largest cryptocurrency after bitcoin, rose to a fresh all-time high above $2,100.
The precise cause of the early Saturday morning bitcoin price surge was not immediately clear, however, a cryptic tweet from Tesla
“… going to moon very soon,” Musk said via Twitter, shortly after the bitcoin price jumped, perhaps referencing the popular “bitcoin to the moon” meme and sparking speculation Musk’s rocket company SpaceX could follow Tesla in adding bitcoin to its balance sheet.
“SpaceX buying bitcoin?” asked Danny Scott, the chief executive of Isle of Man-based bitcoin and cryptocurrency exchange CoinCorner, in reply to Musk’s tweet.
At the end of last year, Elon Musk set the bitcoin and cryptocurrency market alight when he tweeted about the possibility of making large bitcoin purchases. In the following weeks, Tesla added $1.5 billion worth of bitcoin to its balance sheet.
Meanwhile, Musk has continued to talk up his “fav” cryptocurrency on Twitter, the “joke” bitcoin rival dogecoin. On April 1, Musk said his private rocket company SpaceX is going to put a “dogecoin on the literal moon”—sending the price of the meme-based cryptocurrency up 35%.
The bitcoin price has doubled so far in 2021, climbing from just under $30,000 per bitcoin. The broad cryptocurrency rally has seen the entire crypto market more than double to reach a combined value of over $2 trillion, with ethereum surging 1,200% over the last 12 months.
Ethereum has soared after beginning a long-awaited upgrade and has been boosted by the growth of decentralized finance (DeFi)—using cryptocurrency technology to reinvent traditional finance, largely on ethereum’s blockchain.
Bitcoin’s massive rally, kicked off by news PayPal
Bitcoin has also seen its reputation as “digital gold” grow over the last year thanks to renowned investors including Paul Tudor Jones naming it as a hedge against inflation.
“Until recently, established brokers, advisors and banks wrote-off crypto as ‘too volatile’—as they did with today’s household tech brands 20 years ago, failing to recognize it as a legitimate asset-class in advice issued to investors,” Stephen Kelso, head of capital markets at ITI Capital, said in emailed comments.
“Now we’re seeing a dramatic change in approach from asset and wealth managers, who increasingly advise their clients that bitcoin is a preferential investment over gold.”