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Bitcoin Price Nears $8,300
The bitcoin price had reached $8,100 over the weekend, but it had been unable to extend the rally further. Nevertheless, it held above the $8,000 mark, positioning it to embark on a new advance on Monday. The flagship cryptocurrency took advantage of that opportunity, and at approximately 15:00 UTC it set a new record high of $8,277. At present, Bitfinex prices bitcoin at $8,244, making it quite plausible that bitcoin will punch through $8,300 — and perhaps threaten the $8,500 mark — before the day is over.
Interestingly, two of bitcoin’s 10 largest trading pairs are with POWR, an ICO-derived token that provides users with access to Australian solar startup Power Ledger’s peer-to-peer energy marketplace. The POWR price has been surging today on the heels of the announcement that Power Ledger’s blockchain would be used as the technological backbone of a government-funded $8 million distributed energy and water system project. Power Ledger has also been actively exploring an expansion into India, and it is likely that investors are bullish on those prospects.
Factors & Outlook
At present, the bulk of bitcoin’s day-to-day gains stem from the expectation that Wall Street will begin dumping money into the bitcoin markets. This could happen at any time, but many people point to the second week of December — the target date for the launch of bitcoin futures on U.S. derivatives exchange CME — as a potential watershed moment for institutional investors who are interested in bitcoin but have thus far remained on the sidelines. Some analysts even predict that the CME launch will carry bitcoin as high as $10,000 before the end of the year.
However, there are other factors at play as well. Last week, the first off-chain atomic swap between bitcoin and litecoin was completed on the lightning testnet. Today, Zap developer Jack Mallers demonstrated a successful mobile wallet payment on the lightning testnet. Although lightning remains in development, both of these accomplishments provide investors with hope that the long-awaited second-layer network will be activated on the main Bitcoin network sooner rather than later.
Featured image from Shutterstock.