Bitcoin appreciated by nearly $900 on Tuesday, coming within $1,100 of an all-time high of $24,298.04 registered last week amid a broader bull run in the cryptocurrency. The virtual currency jumped as much as 4 per cent, or $892.60, to touch $23,198.3 at the strongest level of the day. Bitcoin is in an uptrend that began in October after US-based online payments company PayPal allowed its customers to use the virtual currency on its network. (Also Read: From $2,000 To $20,000 In 3 Years, And Counting - All You Need To Know About Bitcoin's Rally)
It was up by $806, or 3.49 per cent, at $23,111.7 at the last count on Tuesday. (Also Read: Bitcoiners Who Missed Rally Express Relief And Regret)
Most other cryptocurrencies followed suit. Among major peers, Ethereum (ETH) traded 1.24 per cent higher at $617.85, Tether was up 0.02 per cent at $0.9997 and Litecoin up 2.72 per cent at $110.459.
Bitcoin has surged exponentially since entering a four-digit value for the first time in 2013. It has rallied more than 130 so far this year, fueled by demand for riskier assets.
The cryptocurrency's perceived quality as a hedge against inflation and expectations of mainstream acceptance lured institutional and retail demand.
Bitcoin's 2020 rally has drawn momentum from strong appetite for riskier assets following unprecedented government and central bank stimulus measures to combat impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, and its reputation for being inflation-proof.
Major central banks around the globe are exploring whether to allow the issuance of digital currencies. A bitcoin, similar to any other real world currency, is the equivalent of cash, but in electronic form.
Like a banknote or coin, it gives its holder a direct claim on the central bank, bypassing commercial banks and offering a greater level of security as a central bank can never run out of the currency it issues.