Bitcoin has been on a roll this year. The world’s best-known cryptocurrency just hit $17,000 (approx. PKR 2,700,000), a valuation that it has not reached in almost three years.
The price of bitcoin was up over 4% in the last 24 hours, trading at $17,030 and hitting its highest point since Jan. 7, 2018, according to data from industry website CoinDesk.
Industry insiders say that bitcoin’s climb this year — which has seen it rise 137% year-to-date — is down to a number of factors, including a wave of COVID-19-related government stimuli and interest from big-name investors like Paul Tudor Jones and Stanley Druckenmiller.
According to CEO CryptoCompare Charles Hayter, part of the reason why Bitcoin is witnessing such a meteoric rise again is the increase in the number of players in the digital asset market.
“The gap between the crypto world and traditional financial institutions has closed dramatically,” he said. “The result is that incumbent players are now fine to play in the digital asset markets. The narrative that is compelling them to do so is this alignment of Covid, monetary policy and political disarray globally.
Furthermore, Bitcoin’s rapid rise can also be explained by a host of major companies making strides to invest in the crypto space. PayPal, for instance, recently started letting its users buy, hold, and sell virtual assets. Fidelity investments, on the other hand, set up a dedicated digital assets unit to make it easier for their clients to trade in the crypto space.
In a sense, Bitcoin is a lot like gold, which is traditionally viewed as a “safe-haven” asset. This is because investors usually get driven towards these assets during times of economic turmoil when the appeal of sovereign currencies like the U.S. dollar diminishes.