Bitcoin hits another record above $64,000 ahead of Coinbase IPO
Bitcoin's (BTC-USD) price reached another all-time high on Wednesday, touching $64,717.01 (£46,908.11), ahead of Coinbase's historic stock market listing in New York.
Bitcoin, which has been up and down over the last few weeks, crossed $64,000 on Wednesday and at the time of writing was 6% higher to $64,585.594. Just yesterday, it had crossed the $63,000 mark for the first time.
The rally has come in anticipation of cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase's hotly tipped US stock market listing.
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"One thing to keep an eye on today is the debut of Coinbase on the Nasdaq at $250 a share later today," said Michael Hewson, chief market analyst at CMC Markets UK. "We’ve seen an increase in interest in cryptocurrencies over the past week or so with both bitcoin and ethereum hitting new record highs in anticipation of today’s direct listing."
Yesterday, ethereum (ETH-USD), the world's second biggest cryptocurrency, continued its multi-month rally to cross $2,200. At the time of writing, it was up 9% to $2,389.39.
Coinbase is due to list on the Nasdaq (^IXIC) on Wednesday with a valuation that could run in excess of $90bn. It is the largest cryptocurrency exchange in the US and lists about 50 cryptocurrencies for trading.
Active users on its platform surged to 6.1 million from 2.8 million in the fourth quarter of last year, while verified users — those with Coinbase accounts — jumped to 43 million to 56 million.
Nigel Green, chief and founder of deVere Group, an independent financial advisory organisation, said Coinbase’s direct listing was "a truly momentous day for the cryptoverse."
“Should it hit its private market valuation of $100bn, it would immediately become one of the 85 most valuable companies in the US," he said.
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The market value of all bitcoin in circulation hit $1trn for the first time earlier this year, according to data website CoinMarketCap. In December, it soared past Visa (V) to become the world's largest financial network.
Cryptocurrency has been fuelled over the last 12 months by acceptance from mainstream investors and companies, such as Tesla (TSLA) and Mastercard (MA).
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