Bitcoin (BTC-USD) bulls are shooting for the moon, with growing speculation that it could soar as high as $100,000 (£72,437) after reaching fresh records on Wednesday.
The world’s largest cryptocurrency closed at a record of $65,996, which was slightly down from its intraday peak of $66,976. This passed its previous record of $64,889, which it hit in April earlier this year.
It came after the launch of the first US Bitcoin futures exchange-traded fund (ETF), which first listed the day prior.
The ProShares Bitcoin Strategy ETF (BITO) tracks CME bitcoin futures, or contracts speculating on the future price of Bitcoin, rather than the crypto itself. More than 24 million shares of the fund changed hands, making it the second-busiest EFT debut ever.
Bitcoin has surged in recent weeks, and is currently up almost 50% this month alone, its strongest monthly performance so far this year.
“Should the bullish momentum continue, it isn’t out of the realm of possibility to hit $80,000,” Leah Wald, chief executive at Valkyrie Investments, told Bloomberg.
“I think $100,000 this year is a bit optimistic, but anything is possible and it wouldn’t surprise me if we somehow pushed that far north.”
However, some strategists, who decode bitcoin’s potential moves based on technical analysis of charts, have already projected $100,000-plus targets.
Watch: What is bitcoin?
Naeem Aslam, chief market analyst at Ava Trade, said: “This is only the beginning, as investors know the true value of bitcoin is much higher than this. Given the price momentum we are seeing on the back of bitcoin’s ETF, we believe that bitcoin can easily go all the way to $100,000 by the end of this year."
Meanwhile, Fundstrat Global Advisors’s Tom Lee said the Bitcoin ETF could attract inflows worth as much as $50bn in the fund’s first year, meaning that the coin itself could hit $168,000.
But some analysts have questioned whether the all-time high will trigger a sell-off, as seen previously.
Nigel Green, chief executive and founder of DeVere Group, said “long-term holders typically buy in a bear market and sell in a bull run... as such, we can expect to see some long-term holders now cashing in some bitcoin with a view to accumulating more later.”
AJ Bell financial analyst Danni Hewson said: “Bitcoin is back in gravity-defying mode... the question is whether bitcoin can make these gains stick after falling sharply from a previous peak earlier in the year.”
Last year, bitcoin gained more than 300% as the coronavirus pandemic raged on and hit multiple sectors around the world.
However, this year it has faced battles of its own, coming up against regulatory concerns in China and the US. At one point the coin slipped below $30,000.
According to new research by Forex Suggest, bitcoin is projected to be the fifth strongest performing asset by 2024, with an estimated market value of over $5tn thanks to its 103.5% average annual growth rate.
Watch: What are the risks of investing in cryptocurrency?