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Bitcoin exceeds US$68,000 and a record appears



Bitcoin hit its highest level in two years on Monday, surpassing US$68,000 as a wave of silver brought it within striking distance of record highs.

The price reached a high of US$68,580 and was last settled at US$68,161. Bitcoin hit a record high of US$68,999.99 in November 2021.

The largest cryptocurrency by market value has gained 50% this year and most of that rise has occurred in recent weeks, when inflows into US-listed Bitcoin funds surged.

Bitcoin spot exchange-traded funds were approved in the United States earlier this year. Their launch paved the way for new large investors and reignited the enthusiasm and momentum reminiscent of the race to 2021’s record levels.

“Flows are not drying up as investors feel more confident in rising prices,” said Markus Thielen, head of research at crypto analytics firm 10x Research in Singapore.

Net flows into the 10 largest U.S. spot bitcoin funds reached $2.17 billion in the week to March 1, with more than half going to BlackRock’s iShares Bitcoin Trust, according to LSEG data.

Smaller rival Ether has engaged in speculation that it too may soon have exchange-traded funds that would generate inflows. It is up 50 percent since the start of the year and was trading at its highest level in two years on Monday, up 2.6 percent on the day at US$3,518.

The rally occurred in tandem with falling record highs in stock indexes, from Japan’s Nikkei to the tech-heavy S&P 500 and Nasdaq, and with a decline in stock and currency volatility indicators.

“In a world where the Nasdaq is hitting new all-time highs, crypto is going to perform well because bitcoin remains a technology proxy and high-volatility liquidity thermometer,” said Brent Donnelly, trader and president of analytics firm Spectra Markets.

“We’re back in a 2021-style market, where everything’s up and everyone’s having fun.”

(Edited by Shri Navaratnam, Louise Heavens and Sandra Maler)


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