NEW YORK: Bitcoin hit a fresh high on Saturday (Feb 20), extending a two-month rally that took its market capitalisation above US$1 trillion on Friday.

The world’s most popular cryptocurrency rose to a record US$57,553, taking its weekly gain to about 20 per cent. It has surged nearly 100 per cent this year.

Bitcoin’s gains have been fueled by evidence it is gaining acceptance among mainstream investors and companies, such as Tesla, Mastercard and BNY Mellon.

Ether, the second-largest cryptocurrency by market capitalisation and daily volume, on Saturday hit a record US$2,040.62, for a weekly gain of about 12 per cent.

Ether is the digital currency or token that facilitates transactions on the ethereum blockchain. In the crypto world, the terms ether and ethereum have become interchangeable.

Ether futures contracts launched on derivatives exchange CME earlier this month.

Elon Musk, the billionaire chief executive of Tesla, said on Saturday the price of bitcoin and ethereum seemed high.

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