Bitcoin edges above $50,000 for first time since mid-May

The world's largest cryptocurrency hit a record of about $65,000 in April

Bitcoin broke back above $50,000 on August 23, 2021, for the first time in three months as investors piled back into the cryptocurrency on bargain-buying.  AFP
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Bitcoin topped the closely watched $50,000 level again in an ongoing recovery in the cryptocurrency market from a disorderly rout only three months ago.

The largest digital coin advanced as much as 3.5 per cent to almost $50,093 in Asian trading on Monday, with other tokens such as Ether and Cardano’s ADA also rising. Bitcoin was last above $50,000 in mid-May.

The revival in digital currencies has excited animal spirits again among the cryptocurrency faithful, putting longer term predictions of $100,000 or more for Bitcoin back in vogue. Others see the speculative, volatile asset carving out a wider trading range for now.

Bitcoin is “getting nearer the higher end of what I expect as a new trading range in the low-$40,000s to low-$50,000s,” Rick Bensignor, chief executive at Bensignor Investment Strategies, wrote in a note on Monday.

The cryptocurrency hit a record of about $65,000 in April, driven higher by a tide of liquidity, fast-money bets and optimism about growing demand from institutional investors.

But more critical commentary later emerged, including about the environmental cost of the energy consumed by the computers that underpin Bitcoin.

An intensifying cryptocurrency crackdown in China also soured the mood. Bitcoin fell below $30,000 after the May rout.

Updated: August 23, 2021, 4:54 AM