In a run reminiscent of bitcoin’s stunning ascent in early January, the price of leading cryptocurrency blew past $45,000, $46,000 and $47,000 in less than an hour on Monday evening, driven by Tesla’s announcement that it had bought $1.5 billion of bitcoin.

  • Bitcoin (BTC) hit $47,513.57, a new all-time high, before settling back to $47,053.09, up 20.6% in the last 24 hours.
  • $45,000 was supposed to have been a milestone of sorts but the cryptocurrency's race upwards turned it into an afterthought. The cryptocurrency has risen about 67% year to date.
  • A combination of traders in Asia just waking up to the Tesla (TSLA) news combined with a lack of resistance levels above $45,000 were possible causes for the sudden gap upwards.
  • While those might be the immediate catalysts for the sudden surge in the cryptocurrency, they're not the only reasons for bitcoin's stunning rise.
  • A growing number of big institutional investors including Paul Tudor Jones II and Bill Miller have pushed into bitcoin as a potential hedge against inflation, as the U.S. Federal Reserve and central banks around the world pump trillions of dollars of freshly created money into financial markets to stimulate their coronavirus-racked economies.
  • Tesla joins publicly traded companies including Michael Saylor’s MicroStrategy that have steered corporate money into bitcoin. And from the price of bitcoin today, it's clear some investors think it's just getting started.
  • “We think this is just the start to a much wider adoption from household institutional names, finally ready to make the crossover into the crypto space,” Joel Kruger, strategist at the cryptocurrency exchange LMAX Digital, said in an email.
  • As more institutional investors like Tesla are buying bitcoin and "hodl" it for the long term, bitcoin’s liquid supply is continuing to decline, according to blockchain analytics firm Glassnode’s newsletter on Monday.
  • “Currently, around 78% of issued bitcoin are either lost or being hodled,” the newsletter said. “This leaves less than 4 million bitcoin to be shared among future market entrants - including large institutional investors such as PayPal, Square,
  • Bitcoin’s latest rally also pushed prices for other major cryptocurrencies including ether, algorand, and litecoin, according to CoinDesk 20.
  • “Mainstream adoption [for crypto] is happening right before our eyes, and it is taking place before the entire world,” Mati Greenspan, founder and CEO of Quantum Economics, wrote in his newsletter on Monday. 
  • With this latest surge, the market value of bitcoin ($860.4 billion) has once again passed that of Tesla ($818.4 billion) after topping it for the first time ever earlier Monday.

UPDATE (Feb. 8, 23:35 UTC): Updates to add bitcoin passed $46k for the first time.

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