Bitcoin continues to flex its muscles, flying high early Thursday to breach the $48,000 level to notch its latest record price following continued buying from major institutions, CNBC and Business Insider reported.
The world’s most sought-after crypto hit as much as $48,316.82, data by CoinDesk show. Bitcoin (BTC) rallied almost 70% so far this year, additional figures from the CoinDesk disclosed.
Thursday’s rally is the second time the favorite crypto has barreled past the $48,000-level this week and neared the $50,000 handle.
Big players embracing crypto
On Thursday, Mastercard said it would enable merchants to accept select digital currencies on its platform starting later this year, while Bank of New York Mellon announced it would issue, hold and transfer Bitcoin for clients in the future, Insider said.
Electric vehicle giant Tesla Inc announced it would also start accepting Bitcoin as a mode of payment for its products. The company said Monday it has purchased $1.5 billion worth of the crypto.
Despite Bitcoin’s strong momentum so far, a number of market observers, executives, and advocates from the crypto landscape are optimistic the top crypto asset will hit between $60,000 to a six-digit figure this year. Although, non-believers think that Bitcoin has no intrinsic value and the biggest bubble the world has seen in many years.
Optimism and doubt
Still, the crypto’s defenders are upbeat. “The next major resistance level for Bitcoin is the psychological barrier at $50,000,” Joel Kruger, cryptocurrency strategist at electronic asset exchange LMAX Digital, was quoted by Forbes as saying.
For his part, Roman Regelman, chief executive officer of asset servicing and director of digital at BNY Mellon, said the $2 trillion banks is proud to be the first global financial institution to bear plans in providing “an integrated service for digital assets.”
Bitcoin, however, has faced scrutiny from regulators and lawmakers as the price continues to balloon. According to U.S. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen, the “misuse of cryptocurrencies” is becoming a major cause for concern.
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