Bitcoin’s Mind-Boggling Rally Approaches $13,000 as Market Eyes New All-Time High

Bitcoin’s market cap broke $225 billion on Wednesday, as the largest cryptocurrency approached $13,000 for the first time in 17 months, setting the stage for a fast return to all-time highs less than two years before the previous peak.

BTC/USD Update

The bitcoin price on Wednesday peaked at $12,935 on Bitstamp, the highest since early 2018 when the market began its long unwind from record levels. At the time of writing, the BTC/USD exchange rate was up 7.1% at $12,580.

Bitcoin price
Bitcoin (BTC/USD) shows no signs of slowing despite extreme overbought signals. | Source: TradingView.

At current values, bitcoin has a total market capitalization of $224.2 billion. The market cap peaked near $229 billion during the height of the rally on Wednesday. Reported trade volumes were $32.4 billion, according to CoinMarketCap.

Bitcoin’s value has tripled in the last three months and its share of the overall crypto market has surged to 61.2%. That’s the highest dominance rate in over two years.

The overall cryptocurrency market is valued at $366 billion. At the time of writing Wednesday morning, all major assets had reported gains, with Ethereum (ETH) generating double-digit returns.

Bitcoin Bubble?

For many casual observers of the bitcoin market, the latest melt-up in prices is nothing more than a bubble waiting to pop. But a closer look at network fundamentals, trade volumes and institutional on-ramps suggest that the forces of supply and demand are at work. This doesn’t mean bitcoin isn’t due for a correction (the market is extremely overbought by most conventional metrics), but attributing the gains solely to irrational exuberance doesn’t do it justice – not this time around.

Permabear Peter Schiff recently argued that it’s foolish to “rationalize the bitcoin bubble.” This view feeds into his broader narrative that bitcoin isn’t backed by anything and that it is merely a speculative instrument that will never compete with the true store-of-value asset: gold.

But how many asset bubbles return to record highs so soon after they popped? At this stage, bitcoin is on track to return to record highs less than two years after the previous top.

Earlier this week, Morgan Creek Digital’s Anthony Pompliano wrote a lengthy article predicting that bitcoin will hit $100,000 by the end of 2021. His argument hinges on bitcoin’s disinflationary supply schedule and the sharp rise in demand for the digital asset over time.

Recently, crypto trader Josh Rager predicted that a return to record highs is within range. The path to higher highs hinges on the $14,200 level, which is the last minor area standing between current prices and $20,000.

“After price passes $14,200 there isn’t a lot standing in the way to new all-time highs,” Rager tweeted Tuesday.

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. Charts via TradingView.

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