Bitcoin Clears New Hurdle, Briefly, Sort Of
There was a new triumph for bitcoin recently, but one that comes with a bit of an asterisk attached. The popular cryptocurrency and perhaps the ultimate mobile payment system managed to break the $3,000 mark recently, though it didn’t stay there long, and it depended somewhat on who you asked.
The new word came from CoinDesk’s Bitcoin Price Index, which put the price at just a hair above $3,000 for the first time on Sunday. Disputing that point, however, was CoinMarketCap, whose own figures showed bitcoin topping out at just a hair under $3,000.
If it seems like such market instruments shouldn’t have varying prices—there’s no arguing about how much the Dow closed at yesterday—it’s a matter of how exchange rates are calculated. Turns out, with bitcoin, there’s more than one way to calculate it thanks to fluctuations in value across different bitcoin exchanges.
Regardless of this fine-point quibble, there’s no doubt of one thing: bitcoin valuations are on the rise, in a big way, and this only really recently. Back in early May, bitcoin was down around $1,400 a unit and some thought it was a minor miracle even then. Now, with $3,000 looking like either a very real possibility or an already-occurred event, it’s worth looking more closely at this investment vehicle that’s rapidly turning into a viable market option.
Granted, some are looking at bitcoin with a kind of concern. Mark Cuban recently suggested that bitcoin was in a bubble, and not without reason. Then again, bitcoin had a similar run up from its levels around near-worthless in 2010—there was a time when two pizzas could be had for 10,000 bitcoin, which in today’s values would make those pizzas worth about $15,000,000 apiece—to its first top of around $1,200 back in 2012.
Still, whether this is the next Holland tulip or the strangest investment property around, it’s clear that bitcoin is gaining substantially in value. There’s not much reason for that gain other than sheer popularity, so it’s a safe bet that we’ll likely see a fairly hefty market correction in bitcoin before too much longer.