Bitcoin, once buried, is back.
The original cryptocurrency is soaring, riding an eight-day winning streak to reach prices last seen in January of 2018, when it was coming down from an all-time high of nearly $20,000. At the time of writing, bitcoin was trading around $12,800, according to Coinmarketcap.
The eight-day streak is one of the longest on record for bitcoin, and also one of the strongest in terms of aggregate performance. The notoriously volatile asset has strung together streaks of consecutive daily increases as long, or longer, only five previous times. (This is according to closing daily prices using UTC time.)
It’s impossible to say exactly what has reignited interest in the cryptocurrency, which had fallen as low as $3,200 in December, but it’s almost certainly related to Facebook’s June 18 announcement that it plans to launch its own crypto token, the Libra, with a group of partners. While the two coins are very different—Libra will be pegged to a basket of currencies and overseen by a consortium, while bitcoin floats freely and is completely decentralized—the endorsement of crypto by one of the world’s largest tech companies, along with partners like Visa and eBay, appears to have nudged once tentative buyers into the market. Or, just as plausibly, enough speculators are expecting a flood of newcomers into bitcoin that they are buying it up in the expectation of a rise.
Either way, for bitcoin owners who shivered through a bitter crypto winter, the sun is shining on them today.
* As of 1:30pm UTC