The price of bitcoin is up nearly $100 on the day, rising more than 5% to reach a high of $1,814 on the CoinDesk Bitcoin Price Index (BPI).
At press time, the average bitcoin price across major exchanges was $1,808, up from an opening average of $1,718.20. The increase follows a correction earlier this week in which bitcoin fell to $1,650, and comes at a time at which the market for blockchain protocols is becoming more competitive.
In particular, protocols like Ripple Consensus Ledger, developed by San Francisco startup Ripple for cross-border transactions, and ethereum, a blockchain for smart contracts, have begun to develop unique value propositions that appear to be winning investment dollars.
Ripple's XRP token, for instance, is up nearly 6,000% on the year, while ethereum's ether token was up nearly 1,000%.
The development has not gone unnoticed by exchange and brokerage operators.
In response to questions about how new customers are behaving, Bram Ceelen, co-founder of cryptocurrency brokerage Anycoin Direct, reported they are "pretty much buying everything", a statement that's consistent with the current speculative appetite.
"Altcoin volume might have even increased more than bitcoin volume [of late]," he said.
Andrea Medri, founder of cryptocurrency exchange The Rock Trading, however, voiced his optimism that bitcoin would continue to establish its own value proposition, even in such an environment.
"[Bitcoin] always retraces itself," said, adding:
"I'm coming from the times when it dropped from 10$ to 1$."
Rock climbing image via Shutterstock