NEW DELHI: Cryptocurrency ether, which is built on the Ethereum open source blockchain, hit a record high of $ 1,448 on Tuesday. The second-largest currency, in terms of market capitalization, has matched some earnings and traded at $ 1,352 level at 1230pm, Wednesday, according to data available with WazirX. Larger peers, bitcoin, traded 3.7% lower at $ 35,215.00.
Bitcoin, which is the largest cryptocurrency with a market capitalization of $ 655 billion, has achieved gains of around 20% since the beginning of the year, after touching an all-time high of $ 41,940. By comparison, Ether, which has a market cap of $ 154 billion, has increased by around 86% this year.
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Other dominant cryptocurrencies such as stellar, ripple, and lead were trading 6%, 7% and 0.18% lower, on Wednesday.
The stellar rally in cryptocurrencies over the past few months has attracted interest from large global organizations.
Coindesk recently reported that a major US banking firm, Goldman Sachs, has issued an information request (RFI) to explore digital asset custody.
Moreover, financial services giant Jefferies in December made a 5% allocation towards bitcoin at a price of $ 22,779 by reducing its allocation to gold bullion by 5 percentage points.
According to Jefferies, the main reason for this allocation was bitcoin becoming investible to organizations with custodial arrangements in place for digital assets.
“Bitcoin ended in 2020 up 27% from the level at which it was allocated but up 305% for 2020 as a whole. Since then it has risen another 28% so far in 2021 to $ 36,999. It has now become clear that bitcoin represents a valid alternative to gold for risk-averse capital seeking a store of value, amid accumulating evidence of policies of ruining currency in the G7 world, “said Christopher Wood , head of global equity strategy, Jefferies, in the latest issue of Greed & Fear’s newsletter dated January 7, 2021.
In this respect, the total capitalization of the bitcoin market at the end of 2020 was $ 539 billion, compared to estimates of $ 12 trillion in above-ground gold, he added.