After holding steady for the last two days, bitcoin’s price finally broke free and set a fresh all-time high this morning. At 13:46 UTC, the cryptocurrency’s price was trading at $8,469.20. At 15:05 UTC, the cryptocurrency was trading at $8,573.20, up by 4.53% in the last 24 hours.  

Ethereum, which has been on an upswing in the last couple of days, continued its record-setting spree and climbed to a high of $485.19 at 01:30 UTC. As of this writing, the cryptocurrency was trading at $474.11, relatively unchanged in the last 24 hours.

Ethereum was created after a DAO hack last year. (See also: Ethereum Reaches Consensus To Hard Fork, Fixing DAO Hack.) The cryptocurrency’s original blockchain, which survived as Ethereum Classic, registered big gains yesterday, rising by 21.36% to $22.54. (See also: Bitcoin Holds Steady As Ethereum Registers Gains.) 

With the exception of Bitcoin Cash, which declined by 3.74% to $1,604, the remaining top 10 most-traded cryptocurrencies trended upward. The overall market capitalization for the cryptocurrency market rose to $273 billion from $260.2 billion 24 hours ago.

Will Ethereum Reach $500?  

Several factors affect cryptocurrency prices, from media mentions to trading volume. While bitcoin has been the focus of attention for media and traders, the surge in ethereum’s price is not completely unexpected.

In a recent Bloomberg interview, billionaire Michael Novogratz, who holds roughly 10% of his net worth in digital currencies, said that ether was “going to put a new high soon.” Back in June, he had made the opposite prediction after selling part of his stash of digital coins. He claimed then that cryptocurrencies had had a “spectacular run” but “trees don’t grow in the sky.” 

Bitcoin and Ethereum crashed by as much as 25% in the 24 hours following his announcement. This time around, Novogratz has predicted a price target of $500 for ethereum and $10,000 for bitcoin by the end of 2017. (See also: New $500 Million Hedge Fund Will Focus On Cryptocurrencies.) 

But that estimate seems conservative compared to the forecast of $14,000 by Standpoint Research's Ronnie Moas. In a note to clients last week, Moas wrote that there had been “positive developments” within the bitcoin ecosystem in the last 5 months and that “a few of the obstacles that were in bitcoin’s way have been knocked down.”

In the meanwhile, Nikolay Storonsky, CEO of U.K.-based bank alternative Revolut, told CNBC that bitcoin was not a fraud and compared it to gold in that both entities were "less likely" to be used in daily transactions. According to Storonsky, 99 percent of bitcoin transactions are "speculation-driven." 

 

 

 

 

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