Bitcoin (BTC/USD) has continued its hot streak from this past weekend, surging past $300.
BTC has gained more than 20% within the past two hours alone. It has added 30% in the latest leg of its recovery, which started this past weekend. Since hitting a new 14-month low of $162 a week and a half ago, it has nearly doubled in value, making for a handsome return for gutsy traders diving in at the bottom.
The rise also nearly erases all of BTC’s losses for the year, which are now only 5%. It also brings BTC back above its 50-day moving average (MA), which had been falling quickly and is now below $300. BTC had not traded above this mark since early December and, indeed, was nowhere even close until this past weekend. The combination of the sudden rise with a sharply declining price during the past three weeks enabled their convergence.
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The cross-over may further encourage bullish traders looking for confirmation of a new rally. Volume has soared to over 4,000 BTC/hour, and aggregate 24-hour volume is the highest since the big drop 10 days ago.
Litecoin’s (LTC/USD) gains have been more muted, having already made the bulk of its advances over the weekend. It is currently trading at $2.27 on BTC-e. The LTC/BTC rate is back to 0.008, and had advanced past 0.009 during litecoin’s outperformance yesterday.
The rise was likely driven by news of Coinbase’s imminent launch of a bitcoin exchange. While in theory the development is good for the Bitcoin ecosystem, it does not necessarily increase the value of its currency. In the past, the addition of altcoins such as Litecoin to major exchanges was initially greeted with much euphoria, which eventually fizzled.
Prices on BTC-e have diverged significantly from those on its peers, with a current spread of about $9 (3.1%).