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IN CRYPTO WE TRUST

World currencies are tanking on Brexit, but bitcoin is surging

Some of Bitcoin enthusiast Mike Caldwell's coins are pictured at his office in this photo illustration in Sandy
Reuters/Jim Urquhart
Enjoying the benefits of being uncorrelated to other currencies.
  • Joon Ian Wong
By Joon Ian Wong

Technology Reporter

Published Last updated on This article is more than 2 years old.

Global currency markets are a sea of red in the wake of this morning’s shock Brexit news. The pound is down 6.44% against the euro and weakened 10% against the dollar. But one currency–or more accurately, cryptocurrency–is surging: Bitcoin is up 7% in the last seven hours of trading, adding gains to a rally that started as the UK went to the polls yesterday (June 23).

Bitcoin was actually slumping after a bull run that started in mid-May and had put the digital currency at a two-year high. That changed around 3pm UK time on the day of the referendum. Bitcoin has gained 20% in value over the last 24 hours of trading.

Bitcoin boosters are celebrating, viewing the currency’s climb as a flight to safety by investors. Barry Silbert, a prolific investor in bitcoin and cryptocurrency startups through his firm Digital Currency Group, was among the first to point this out:

Silbert might be leaping to conclusions. All the bitcoin in circulation today is worth about $10.6 billion, a tiny amount compared to the trillions of dollars worth that are traded on the foreign exchange markets daily. But it’s clear that as investors rushed to buy traditional flight-to-safety assets like US treasuries and gold when the referendum’s results came in, bitcoin was right there, rising in lockstep alongside them.

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