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Bitcoin price surges 20%, Ethereum up 50% ahead of ‘historic’ event

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The price of bitcoin (BTC) has surged more than 20 per cent over the last week, reaching its highest level in more than a month.

Seven straight days of price rises saw the cryptocurrency rise above $23,500 on Wednesday, providing investors with some long-awaited positive movement after nearly eight months of downward trajectory.

Despite the bounce, bitcoin is still only trading at roughly one third of the peak it experienced last November, with crypto analysts divided over whether a bottom has finally been reached, or it is just a temporary relief rally.

“While there is no guarantee that this latest upsurge is going to spell an end to the ongoing crypto winter, that the market is recovering is a relief to investors, particularly long-term retail and institutional holders,” Vadym Synegin, co-founder of the Web3 platform WeWay, told The Independent.

“While many addresses are likely in losses at the moment, bitcoin has continued to be very popular among investors, with a good number considering the coin a viable hedge against inflation.”

Bitcoin’s revival has been mirrored by the broader crypto market, with Binance Coin (BNB), Cardano (ADA), dogecoin (DOGE) and Polkadot (DOT) all seeing similar price gains over the last week.

Even bigger gains were seen by Ethereum (ETH), which is up more than 50 per cent since last week. The world’s second most valuable cryptocurrency was boosted by news that an event known as The Merge has a provisional date to go live.

This will see Ethereum switch from a proof-of-work system to a proof-of-stake system, reducing the network’s energy consumption by roughly 99.95 per cent. Developers of the cryptocurrency describe it as “the most significant upgrade in the history of Ethereum”.

The combined surge saw the overall crypto market return above $1 trillion for the first time since June.

“The reversal of recent capitulations in the cryptoasset space is a very encouraging indicator that there is still value being realised by investors as new information and cycles take hold,” Simon Peters, an analyst at the online trading platform eToro, wrote in a note to investors.

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