At press time, the father of cryptocurrencies has incurred a small bull run during the early morning hours of June 2, and is now trading for over $200 more than where it stood just 24 hours ago. While this behavior is nothing new (bitcoin has fallen some, then gained some over the past several days), the spike is certainly a welcome sign in the books of most investors, and the size of the price jump in question could signal the end of a long and arduous bear run as the bulls, once again, begin to take over the financial reins.
This weekend, bitcoin is trading for almost as much as the world’s most valuable banknote, according to one source. Despite being under half the price of its 2017 peak, bitcoin now stands close to the value of the largest banknote in circulation in Brunei. The note is worth approximately $10K; at the time of writing, bitcoin’s price sits at $7,644.
The banknote, which features a portrait of Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah, was issued in 2006, and can be used in both Singapore and Brunei.
Despite falling deep in the red since its December 2017 high, bitcoin is still attracting capital investors by the hundreds, and the amount of money being put into cryptocurrencies and blockchain technology by venture capitalists and initial coin offerings (ICOs) is growing every day.
Startups are often considered very risky, as they are new to the business world and are simply entering their early phases, making them more vulnerable to failure and operational issues. In 2017, venture capitalists poured $964 million (nearly $1 billion) into blockchain and cryptocurrency related startups. We’ve now barely reached the halfway point of 2018, and that number has already been exceeded, with $1.4 billion having been put into similar startups over the last five months alone.
Venture capitalists like David Pakman – a partner at Venrock – remain confident that cryptocurrencies are the way of the future, and that trading will rise in the long run.
“There is so much institutional money waiting for a properly regulated cryptocurrency exchange,” he says. “We’re not watching the price of the cryptocurrencies as a barometer of the health of the industry. We are wondering which projects will gain large market share, and what new problems they may solve.”
Venrock recently signed a deal with the New York-based firm CoinFund, which helps entrepreneurs build startups using blockchain technology.
In addition, fundraising from ICOs has risen extensively since last year, despite ongoing speculation and regulatory scrutiny in major countries like China, the U.S. and South Korea. The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) for example, has worked hard to crack down on the industry, while China is seeking to ban ICOs altogether…
And yet, the money keeps rolling in. Year-to-date, investors have poured over $9 billion into initial coin offerings, and the dollar amount for 2018 dwarfs that of 2017, which equaled about $3.9 billion.
Coinschedule CEO Alex Buelau explains that most ICOs have simply moved to countries with friendlier or less stringent regulations.
“Most ICOs now have a clause that you can’t be an American or Chinese investor,” he explains. “So, now ICOs are based out of Singapore, Estonia, Malta or Gibraltar.”