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Bitcoin tops $65,000 as it nears 2021 all-time high

Jaap Arriens | NurPhoto | Getty Images

The price of bitcoin rose to start the week, edging even closer to its all-time high after the rally took a breather over the weekend.

The flagship cryptocurrency was last higher by 3.7% at $65,127.00, according to Coin Metrics. Earlier, it rose to as much as $65,606.17, its highest level since November 2021. Ether advanced 1% to $3,508.24.

Both coins are coming off their best week in almost a year (bitcoin gained about 21% and ether 16%) but paused their run over the weekend as the market digested two days of steep outflows from the Grayscale Bitcoin ETF that were offset by inflows into other “newborn” bitcoin ETFs.

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Bitcoin is edging toward its all-time high

“With the birth of these 9 new ETFs the big moves now tend to take place during the normal trading week rather than the weekends,” said Antoni Trenchev, cofounder of crypto exchange Nexo. “What we’re seeing today … might well be a rerun of early last week when bitcoin surged $10,000 in the space of a couple of days. We’re in that sort of environment when a day or two of sideways consolidation can precede explosive price action thanks to the voracious demand of these new spot ETFs.”

Investors have been extra eager to see bitcoin approach its all-time high. At $65,000 it’s sitting about 6% off its November 2021 intraday record of $68,982.20.

Some analysts have suggested that while it could keep rising in the short term, bitcoin may may cool in the next few weeks, as unrealized profit margins approach extreme levels. Bitcoin’s realized price is sitting at just about $42,700, according to CryptoQuant.

Nevertheless, long-term investors are confident that the combination of increasing demand for bitcoin through the new U.S. exchange-traded funds and a tighter supply expected after the April halving event will push the price of bitcoin to a new all-time high.

Crypto has also been getting a slight bid from the stock market, where the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite reached an all-time high on Friday, becoming the last of the major stock indexes to hit a record close this year. David Duong, head of institutional research at Coinbase, said that although March could be a month of sideways grinding for bitcoin, the cryptocurrency is benefitting from an AI- and blockchain technology-driven productivity boom he expects is here to stay.

Large-cap cryptocurrency moves Monday were more modest, although prices of smaller coins, particularly meme coins, have swelled. Dogecoin jumped 5%, while Shiba Inu coin surged 15%. Analysts point to their performance as evidence that retail investors, who have been absent for much of the recent crypto rally, are starting to return to the crypto market.

Crypto equities rode the bitcoin wave. Coinbase and Microstrategy rose 6% and 9%, respectively, in premarket trading Monday. In the mining group, CleanSpark jumped more than 8%, Marathon Digital traded about 7% higher, Iris Energy advanced 5.5% and Riot Platforms added 4%.

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