Bitcoin increased by 4% to $49,477.75 on Monday, its highest level since December 2021. The cryptocurrency has risen by 15.7% this year.
It is aided by regulators approving US-based bitcoin ETFs and expectations of interest rate cuts. At 1535 GMT, bitcoin was up 3.9% on the day to $49,390.
Bitcoin is a virtual currency created using computer code. Unlike real-world currencies like the US dollar or euro, it lacks a central bank and is not backed by a government.
Instead, the Bitcoin community controls and regulates it. Advocates argue that this makes it an efficient alternative to traditional currencies because it is not subject to the whims of a state, which may devalue its currency to boost exports.
Bitcoins, like other currencies, can be exchanged for goods and services—or other currencies—as long as the other party is willing to accept them.
Where does it come from?
The cryptocurrency was created in 2009 as encrypted software by a person going by the name Satoshi Nakamoto, which sounds Japanese.
Last year, secretive Australian entrepreneur Craig Wright claimed to be the creator of Bitcoin, but some have questioned his assertion.
Hundreds of other digital currencies followed, but Bitcoin remains the most popular, with an increasing number of merchants accepting digital currencies as payment.
Transactions occur when heavily encrypted codes are transmitted over a computer network. The entire network monitors and verifies transactions in order to ensure that no single Bitcoin is spent in more than one location at the same time.
Users can “mine” Bitcoins — create new ones — by having their computers run complex and increasingly difficult processes. However, the model is limited, with only 21 million units ever being produced.
To read our blog on “Bitcoin sees its biggest weekly rally in four months,” click here