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article imageBitcoin pushes past the $3,000 mark, then slides downwards

By James Walker     Jun 12, 2017 in Technology
Bitcoin hit an unprecedented milestone today, reaching the $3,000 mark and setting a new lifetime value record. It comes just weeks after the cryptocurrency broke through $2,000. Its value fell throughout the rest of the day though.
In late May, Bitcoin surged past $2,000 for the first time ever, before ending at $2,130. Overnight, it went even further, managing to pass comfortably beyond $3,000. Its value hung at $3,012.05 before slipping around 8% to around $2,700 in trading today.
Despite the subsequent collapse, the new milestone signals that Bitcoin's phenomenal rise this year is still far from over. It is becoming increasingly clear to analysts that the cryptocurrency is riding another bubble that's ready to burst at any moment. Although Bitcoin is notoriously volatile, there's currently no indication that it should fall catastrophically in the very near future.
Bitcoin has been lifted to a spectacular 187% gain in value this year due to a unique combination of favourable factors. In particular, the relaxing of trading rules in China and Japan has been repeatedly cited as a key cause of the rise. Regulators in the nations now recognise Bitcoin as a currency that can be used in banking, making trading less risky.
It's therefore easier for Bitcoin sellers in the markets to obtain and move on the coins. In turn, demand and trading activity have both risen, leading to the considerable price increases. These regional developments have been amplified by a heightened worldwide demand for cryptocurrencies. The widening acceptance of blockchain technology has led to coins being sought after by a variety of businesses and industries.
Blockchain tech is also seeing use as a promising emerging innovation in security software. The potential future applications of the concept that Bitcoin is built on have contributed to the currency's rise in value. It has delivered similar value bumps to rivals like Ethereum and Ripple too.
Even considering these changes in the market, Bitcoin's huge increase in value over the past year is still unprecedented. The cryptocurrency is taking investors by surprise, many of whom thought the bubble would have burst by now. Bitcoin has seen gains of around 30% in June alone. It is outperforming stock markets and becoming a commodity in its own right.
As the growth has now been sustained for so long, many analysts are speculating that Bitcoin won't be going away any time soon. Investor Brian Kelly told CNBC that the cryptocurrency is "here to stay," explaining his view that the current bull market could develop into a "multi-year" trend. As more money is pushed into the market, prices look set to rise higher still. Even with the corrections and drops in value that can be anticipated, it's expected that Bitcoin will now retain its place as one of the highest value currencies.
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