INTERNATIONAL - Bitcoin tested 15-month highs on Monday after jumping more than 10 percent over the weekend, with analysts ascribing the spike to growing optimism over the adoption of cryptocurrencies after Facebook unveiled its Libra digital coin.
The biggest cryptocurrency hit $11,247.62 on the Bitstamp exchange late on Sunday, its highest since March last year. It later pulled back, and was last up 0.7 percent at $10,917.
Facebook said last week it planned to launch a new cryptocurrency called Libra, though the announcement immediately led to questions from regulators and politicians across the world.
Mati Greenspan, an analyst at eToro, said bitcoin’s gains underscored growing optimism among retail investors that Facebook’s plans were part of a wider trend of major companies adopting cryptocurrencies.
“Traders are speculating on future involvement of large players like Facebook,” he said. “They believe that Libra will create mass awareness of cryptocurrencies and act as a gateway to adoption.”