Bitcoin rips past $14,000 in latest record high

Bitcoin began the year below $1,000 but has seen a sharp increase in recent weeks.

Bitcoin surged $2,000 in less than 24 hours on Thursday to hit a record high of $14,000.

The cryptocurrency began the year below $1,000 but has seen a sharp rise in recent weeks, despite warnings of a dangerous bubble.

Bitcoin hit the latest milestone during early trading in Asia, according to the website

The new record high comes just days before the launch of bitcoin futures on two exchanges, including the world’s largest futures exchange, CME.

Critics have said Bitcoin is going through a bubble similar to the dotcom boom, whereas others say it is rising in price because it is crossing into the financial mainstream.

Alex Sunnarborg, of crypto hedge fund Tetras Capital, told Coindesk that the likely culprit of this latest milestone is a fear-of-missing-out now ensnaring both long-time market observers as well as new investors as the cryptocurrency prepares for its debut in futures products next week.

“People who had bitcoin and went into alts are going back into bitcoin,” he remarked.

A steady stream of about 3,600 new bitcoins are created a day – with about 16.5 million now in circulation from a maximum limit of 21 million.

It now has a market value of more than $230 billion, meaning it would rank among the 20 largest stocks in the S&P 500.

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