The markets bounced back on Thursday following a sluggish performance on Wednesday. Bitcoin price led the way, fighting its way to a new record of $4,739 on Bitstamp. The ethereum price, meanwhile, continues to climb toward $400. Altogether, 80 of the top 100 cryptocurrencies made progress, lifting the total crypto market cap to a new all-time high above $170 billion.
Bitcoin Price Hits Record High
The bitcoin price had broken through the $4,600 wall on Tuesday but had spent most of the past 48 hours closer to $4,500. On Thursday morning, it began to rise, climbing past $4,600 once more. By the time of writing, the bitcoin price had climbed to a new global average all-time high of $4,723, resulting in a market cap of more than $77 billion.
Now that the bitcoin price has broken through $4,600, many analysts expect $5,000 is not far away. Standpoint Research founder Ronnie Moas–who has a mid-2018 bitcoin price target of $7,500–revealed that he believes bitcoin will soar to $20,000 within three years as investors begin to use cryptocurrencies as a way to diversify their portfolios.
Ethereum Price Presses Toward $400
The ethereum price joined bitcoin in its 2% rally, ticking up to $379 as it continues its march back to $400. Ethereum now has a market cap of $35.8 billion.
Much of the ethereum price’s August rally should be attributed to the continued proliferation of initial coin offerings (ICOs). Yesterday, the popular messaging app Kik announced it had concluded a $50 million token presale leading up to its September ICO. The creation of Kin, the platform’s native token, will give many people their first exposure to cryptocurrency.
There is also speculation that ride-sharing app Uber will one day adopt cryptocurrency. The company just selected a bitcoin-friendly CEO, Dave Khosrowshahi, who helmed Expedia when it began experimenting with bitcoin. Khosrowshahi wants to take Uber public within the next three years, so it’s not unreasonable to wonder whether Uber could follow the growing trend within the technology sector to tokenize their platforms and acquire funding through an ICO.
That said, the ICO regulatory environment remains uncertain. China, for instance, is considering a blanket ban on all ICOs, according to a new report.
Altcoins Bounce Back
The altcoin markets were disappointing on Wednesday, but most cryptocurrencies bounced back on Thursday.
The bitcoin cash price took a break from its week-long decline, climbing 3% to $597. The Ripple and litecoin price experienced 4% bumps, while Dash rose about 2%.
Despite the widespread advance, NEM was the only top 10 cryptocurrency to climb more than 10%. For the day, the NEM price rose 12% and currently sits at $0.322. Its market cap is now less than $100 million away from surpassing $3 billion.
The IOTA price returned a 6% gain, while the Monero price rose 8% to $138. The NEO price rounded out the top 10 with a 9% advance.
The market’s strong performance increased the $1 billion club membership to yet another record. OmiseGO crossed $1 billion for the first time, joining Hshare and Qtum to raise the club’s total membership to an all-time high of 14. However, each of these three cryptocurrencies has a market cap hovering very close to the $1 billion threshold, so it’s likely that one or more of them will slip below it during even a minor market contraction.
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