Bitcoin Forges Forth as Price Clears $5,300, Crypto Market Hits Yearly High

Bitcoin’s (BTC) momentous rally shifted into higher gear at the start of Asian trading Monday, as prices crossed $5,300 for the first time in five months. The rally was extended across the digital currency universe, with Ethereum (ETH), bitcoin cash (BCH) and Stellar (XLM) emerging as the biggest winners.

Bitcoin Price Resumes Uptrend

The bitcoin price peaked at $5,373.90 on Bitfinex, its highest since the first half of November. At 10:47 p.m. ET Sunday, bitcoin was trading at $5,327, up 1.7%. BTC trade volumes exceeded $17.2 billion across all virtual exchanges.

There’s no denying that bitcoin is bullish, according to the daily chart. The price has toppled both the 50-day and 200-day moving averages, with movement between the two signaling a bullish crossover in the not-too-distant future. This happens when the 50-day MA overtakes the 200-day MA, which means near-term price action has exceeded the long-running norm.

On a market-wide basis, bitcoin was trading hands at $5,307.56 on average, according to CoinMarketCap. That represents a 24-hour increase of 4.1%. The leading digital currency has returned 29% over the past seven days and is on track to topple the next major resistance located at $5,500.

Also read Hacked’s Week in Review – Crypto Spring is Finally Here: Mystery Order Sparks Massive Bitcoin Rally as Altcoins Follow Suit.

Path of Least Resistance is Higher

In a February 9 article, we asked whether bitcoin had bottomed and presented both the bullish and bearish cases for calling the market floor. In concluding our analysis, we said that the long-term downtrend would only be negated once prices cleared $5,500. At the time, bitcoin was priced just below $3,700. Needless to say, the outlook didn’t look good from a purely technical perspective.

But we also showed how bitcoin was holding up fairly well despite a large drop in volatility, a phenomenon that often works against the bulls. Optimism surrounding institutional adoption was also cited as a positive step toward seeing the end of the bear market.

In the period since then, the market has witnessed a substantial increase in trading volume as well as buyers. The so-called ‘bitcoin whales’ have also played an important role, as it took just one order six days ago to spark the latest rally. But the wheels were already in motion before that mysterious $100 million order.

Fear of missing out (FOMO) and a greater sense of urgency to buy bitcoin have also swept retail markets. This is evident by the sharp increase in daily trade volume and Google searches for words like ‘bitcoin’ and ‘cryptocurrency.’ The Google trend score for ‘bitcoin’ spiked to 79 out of a possible 100 in the week ended April 6. It was valued at 36 the week before.

Read about why Google searches are important for bitcoin and the broader cryptocurrency market. 

Altcoins Surge

Almost all of the major cryptocurrencies emerged as winners at the start of Monday trading. Ethereum, the second-largest blockchain by market cap, jumped 10% to $183.27. The so-called developer’s cryptocurrency had lagged some of its peers at the start of last week’s breakout but appears to be catching up. It too is up by nearly a third in the last seven days.

Bitcoin cash climbed 5.5% to $322.86, extending its weekly rally to a staggering 91.4%. In the process, it has overtaken Litecoin (LTC) in the market-cap rankings, but only barely. LTC is only lagging BCH by roughly $5 million.

Stellar (XLM) is another cryptocurrency that underperformed the market last week. As of Monday, it was among the leaders, climbing 7.3% to $0.1344.

Ethereum Classic (ETC) made our Trade Recommendations on Sunday as the coin surged double-digits. It was last seen trading at $7.61, having gained 15%.

The total cryptocurrency market peaked at $185.6 billion, officially its highest of the year.

Disclaimer: The author owns Bitcoin, Ethereum and other cryptocurrencies. He holds investment positions in the coins, but does not engage in short-term or day-trading.

Featured image courtesy of Shutterstock.

Chief Editor to and Contributor to, Sam Bourgi has spent the past nine years focused on economics, markets and cryptocurrencies. His work has been featured in and cited by some of the world's leading newscasts, including Barron's, CBOE and Forbes. Avid crypto watchers and those with a libertarian persuasion can follow him on twitter at @hsbourgi