Bitcoin has reached a record high valuation of $3,000 per coin to complete a rollercoaster week that begin with the long-awaited split of the cryptocurrency.
A number of exchanges, including popular destinations Coinbase and Kraken, valued a single bitcoin at over $3,000, an all-time high that is up $485 on the valuation one month ago. Earlier this year, Bitcoin surged to surpass $2,000 for the first time in May going on to almost reach $3,000 in June only for the valuation to crash.
Over the last twelve hours, bitcoin’s value has jumped by over 10 percent as forked currency bitcoin cash has seen its valuation crash by 30 percent. Some exchanges including China’s OkCoin even put the value of one bitcoin above $3,200 right now.
Finally, the surge means that the total market cap of bitcoin is more than $50 billion — $51,737,289,581 at the time of writing according to Coinmarketcap.com.
A Coinbase chart shows bitcoin’s valuation has passed $3,000 per coin
One chief concern around the currency was uncertainty around the potential of a split. Some factions of the bitcoin community urged for change to counter the slowing processing rates of bitcoin. The result was a fork called bitcoin cash (known as BCH) which came into existence on August 1.
BCH duplicated the original bitcoin blockchain, meaning that anyone holding BTC was entitled to BCH, too. However, not all exchanges — including Coinbase — supported the forked currency from day one. That led to droves of customers apparently taking their coins out of Coinbase, and even threats of legal action, which ultimately prompted Coinbase to change its mind and pledge to support BCH withdrawals from customers by January 1. Although it hasn’t committed to trading at this point.
BCH has endured a fairly volatile first week, even for bitcoin standards.
The currency started life valued around $555, before peaking at $727 on Wednesday. It later crashed to its current price of around $220 as bitcoin, conversely, soared to cross that $3,000 mark.
The first week of trading for bitcoin cash, via Coinmarketcap.com
Experts are skeptical of BCH’s long-term future because, at this point, beyond the unstable valuation, there isn’t actually anything that can be done with it. That could change in the future if the project attracts enough companies and developers, but the difficult that it takes to mine BCH versus bitcoin isn’t justified to many miners. That may adjust change in the future, as a Coindesk story recently suggested, but bitcoin remains the more lucrative option as of right now.
Note: Story updated to change bitcoin cash abbreviation to BCH.