Bitcoin broke its record again on Friday and approached a $1 trillion market capitalization, a sign that the market ignores analysts’ warnings that it is a “secondary economic spectacle” and poor coverage against falling stock prices.
The world’s most popular cryptocurrency gained 2.6% to a all-time high of $52,932, targeting a weekly hike of more than 8%. So far this month has gone up by about 60%.
Bitcoin profits have been driven by signs that it is gaining acceptance among investors and conventional companies, from Tesla and Mastercard to BNY Mellon.
The latest hikes raised its market capitalization – all bitcoin in circulation – to about $982 billion, according to the CoinMarketCap cryptocurrency data website, and all combined digital currencies are worth about $1.6 trillion.
However, many analysts and investors remain skeptical of this unregulated and volatile digital asset, which is still little used for trading. JP Morgan analysts say current bitcoin prices are well above estimates of their fair value.
“Cryptoactives remain the worst hedge for large falls in equities, with questionable diversification benefits at prices far above production costs, while correlations with cyclical assets are increasing as crypto ownership becomes widespread,” JP Morgan said.
Other investors said this week that bitcoin volatility is an obstacle to their ambitions to become a widespread means of payment.
The ether cryptocurrency traded 0.5% below its record of $1,951 reached on Friday. It has been driven by growing institutional interest and following the launch of its futures on the Chicago Mercantile Exchange.