UPDATE—Bitcoin, which has been defying gravity this week following a serious security breach and theft at the world’s biggest cryptocurrency exchange, Binance, has surged today by more than 10% to over $7,000, its highest so far this year.
The bitcoin price, beginning the year at under $4,000, hit $7,049 on the Luxembourg-based Bitstamp exchange earlier this evening. The wider cryptocurrency market followed bitcoin higher, with major digital tokens ethereum, bitcoin cash, litecoin, and EOS all making double-digit gains over the last 24 hours.
Bitcoin’s steady climb to $7,000 appears to be due to improving bitcoin and crypto sentiment and technical data spurring on the market.
The bitcoin price has been climbing steadily so far this year, causing many to call an end to long so-called crypto winter.
Earlier this week a closely-watched technical indicator appeared to show the bitcoin bull run could be back after bitcoin and the wider cryptocurrency market slumped throughout 2018 following bitcoin’s epic run the year before.
Bitcoin’s relative strength index (RSI), used to identify the momentum behind asset prices, this week registered its highest value since the beginning of 2018—shortly after bitcoin hit its all-time highs.
Bitcoin exploded into the public consciousness in 2017, with the bitcoin price rising from under $1,000 to almost $20,000 in under 12 months. Since then, sentiment has soured as financial institutions and major retailers failed to make moves to support bitcoin and other major cryptocurrencies.
Meanwhile, bullish analysts have continued to voice their support for bitcoin ahead of one of the biggest events in the cryptocurrency calendar starting next week—Blockchain Week NYC and CoinDesk’s Consensus 2019 event, beginning Monday, May 13, and running all week at the New York Hilton Midtown.
The bitcoin price has climbed to year-to-date highs.
This year headline speakers include FedEx’s Fred Smith, Fidelity’s Abigail Johnson, Twitter and Square’s Jack Dorsey, chairman of the U.S. Securities Exchange Commission, Jay Clayton, and U.S. presidential hopeful, Andrew Yang.
Yesterday, analysts from investment bank Canaccord Genuity said they expect bitcoin to rally hard over the next 24 months, potentially returning to its late 2017 highs due to next year’s halving event, where the number of bitcoins rewarded to miners will be cut by 50%.
“Now four months into 2019, we note for the third time the striking similarity in bitcoin’s price action between 2011-2015 and 2015-2019,” Canaccord researchers wrote in a note to clients. “While this simple pattern recognition has little fundamental basis, we note that bitcoin does operate on a four-year cycle of sorts, as the halving of bitcoin’s mining reward occurs approximately every four years.
“Bitcoin has started to form the spring 2019 bottom we began mentioning last year, although a close look at the chart suggests the recovery may be slightly ahead of itself. Looking ahead, if bitcoin were to continue following the same trend, the implication is a slow climb back toward its all-time high of ~$20,000, theoretically reaching that level in March 2021.”