Bitcoin hits fresh record high near $42,000, climbing 40% so far this year

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  • The world’s most valuable cryptocurrency traded as high as $41,973, according to data from Coin Metrics.
  • Bitcoin is currently up 40% so far in 2021, and on track to post its second-best week since the December 2017 rally.
  • The idea of bitcoin as a hedge against inflation has continued to gain traction among investors.

Bitcoin’s price rallied to a fresh all-time high on Friday, smashing past $41,000 for the first time as investors increasingly view the cryptocurrency as an inflation hedge.

The world’s most valuable cryptocurrency traded as high as $41,973 at 10:10 a.m. ET, according to data from Coin Metrics. It’s since fallen back below the $41,000 mark, and was last trading up about 4% from a day earlier, at $40,590.

Bitcoin has extended its 2020 rally — which saw it skyrocket over 300% — into the new year. It is currently up roughly 40% so far in 2021, and on track to post its second-best week since the peak of the December 2017 surge.

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The cryptocurrency’s blistering bull run has attracted attention from institutional investors, who view it as a potential safe haven asset akin to gold. Strategists at JPMorgan recently said that bitcoin could hit $146,000 in the long term, as it competes with gold as an “alternative” currency.

The idea of bitcoin as a hedge against inflation has continued to gain traction among investors, amid unprecedented stimulus from governments around the world to tackle the coronavirus crisis. Analysts have argued such action could lead to a spike in inflation.

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