The price of a single Bitcoin at one of the planet’s leading cryptocurrency exchanges, Bithumb, was for the first time ever above $10,000 today. In the early hours of Monday morning (GMT), the price rose to around $10,068. It has since dropped back down below the enormous five-figure psychological milestone on the largest South Korean exchange. At the time of writing, Bithumb have the price listed as $9,984.40. It is therefore still trading considerably higher than at many of the other exchange prices listed on Coinmarketcap. The price per Bitcoin in the rest of the world is sitting closer to $9,600.

Long time fan of Bitcoin and greater transparency in governance of finance, Julian Assange Tweeted the historic moment earlier today:

The news also means that some of the biggest Bitcoin bulls going have already been proven right with their long term price predictions. Just last month, Mike Novogratz, the former Fortress Hedge Fund manager, claimed that Bitcoin would reach the historic milestone of $10,000 by some point in mid-2018. For now, it’s only Bithumb of the planet’s major exchanges that has listed the price as over five-figures, however, as 2017 comes to a close, a widespread price of $10,000+ is looking a lot more like a case of “when” rather than “if” now.

The inflated price at Bithumb is likely due to heightened demand for cryptocurrency in South Korea following the announcement made earlier this week by one of the largest banks there. Local news source Naver reported that the Shinhan bank are currently testing out offering wallet facilities to account holders with them. A representative of the bank told the publication:

Shinhan is testing a virtual bitcoin vault platform wherein the private keys of bitcoin addresses and wallets are managed and issued by the bank. The bank intends to provide the vault service for free and charge a fee for withdrawals.

With millions of users of Shinhan’s services in Korea and many of the country’s largest companies also banking there, it seems as if the move to offer Bitcoin facilities will mean even greater adoption in one of the markets where cryptocurrency is already thriving. It’s certainly the kind of mainstream recognition that we’ve been waiting for.

The CEO of CommerceBlock a cryptocurrency company believes that Bithumb are just the first of many to cross the threshold into five-figure valuations. He told Capital:

“Few would bet against bitcoin hitting $10,000 before the 25th (December) but many in the crypto industry won’t be punching the air when we get there. Real proponents of cryptocurrency aren’t interested in bitcoin’s price. Widespread adoption is the big prize and too much hype only puts ordinary people off.”

It’s hard not to be a little excited, however. Evidently, the colossal gains over the year is an indication that the world’s first decentralised, permission-less, trustless system of finance is capturing the imagination of many. With the paranoia of a hostile takeover via Segwit2x and Bitcoin Cash largely behind the community, and exciting developments from the CME Group and now in Korea, 2018 is already shaping up to be another fantastic story for the world’s most popular digital currency.

 

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