Bitcoin traded above $35,000 for the first time in Asia on Wednesday, rising to a high of $35,879 and extending a rally that has seen the digital currency rise more than 800% since mid-March.
The world’s most popular cryptocurrency crossed $20,000 for the first time ever on Dec. 16.
Bitcoin’s steep rise can be attributed to a variety of factors. Some expect bitcoin to become a mainstream payment method in due course. Others see bitcoin as a hedge against inflation as governments and central banks turn on the stimulus taps in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Yet others view it as a safe-haven play during the COVID-19 pandemic, something akin to gold, according to analysts.
Bitcoins were launched in 2009 and have become the world’s largest cryptocurrency in a decade’s time. Unlike physical currency, bitcoins are created, traded and distributed through a decentralized ledger system known as a blockchain.