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BITCOIN Digital Wallet BLOCKCHAIN Hits 1 MILLION USERS & BITCOIN Price Goes Over $1,000
The price of Bitcoin returned to more than $1,000 on the Mt.Gox exchange after Zynga Inc. said Jan. 4 it would start accepting the virtual currency for some of its online social games. Photographer: Tomohiro Ohsumi/Bloomberg
As director of trading at an exchange for Bitcoin, Silverman, 25, joined a bevy of Wall Street brokers, analysts hedge funds and other speculators taking a gamble on the new currency. They are drawn to Bitcoin's soaring value -- up about 50-fold the past year -- as well as the novelty of pioneering a new realm of finance.
"I think Bitcoin will be the first and oldest crypto-currency but not the last," Silverman said in an interview. "It'll be a premier safe-haven asset."
Video: Can Wall Street Interest Lend Credence to Bitcoin?
For now Bitcoin, a volatile and ill-understood invention, is anything but safe. A regulatory crackdown on Wall Street risk-taking and reductions in jobs and pay across the industry since the 2008 credit crisis have heightened the virtual currency's appeal to bankers looking to profit elsewhere.
Some Bitcoin enthusiasts are buying and holding the currency, betting that it will hit new heights. Others are starting businesses for trading, exchanging or storing Bitcoin. Still others are pooling venture capital from Silicon Valley and elsewhere with an eye to investing in Bitcoin-related businesses. For the most part, they are individuals, not large firms.
"They are front-running the rest of Wall Street," said Barry Silbert, the founder and head of SecondMarket Inc., a New York brokerage that runs a virtual currency fund. "They are excited about Bitcoin."
Video: Bitcoin Digital Wallet Blockchain Hits 1M Users
The price of Bitcoin returned to more than $1,000 on the Mt.Gox exchange after Zynga Inc. said Jan. 4 it would start accepting the virtual currency for some of its online social games. One Bitcoin was worth about $950 yesterday, according to the CoinDesk Bitcoin Price Index. That is off a high of $1,127.45 in early December, but far above its Jan. 1, 2013 price of $13.30.
"Bitcoin does not behave like a currency at all," Yermack wrote. "Instead it resembles a speculative investment similar to the Internet stocks of the late 1990s."
Regulators have sent mixed signals. Although U.S. agencies have said Bitcoin could be considered a legitimate means of exchange, countries including China and the U.S. have shut down some exchanges and Scandinavian countries have imposed restrictions. "bitcoin wallet" blockchain "bitcoin price" "bitcoin mining" litecoin "bitcoin trading" traffic industry investment business company currency forex "forex trading" corporate salary operation "bitcoin atm" advertising profit future tech technology free "western union" "gold bullion" silver gold "sell gold" bubble 2013 2014 "buy bitcoin" "sell bitcoin" "accept bitcoin" capital asset growth u.s. "united states" china chinese usa america money cash trend mainstream trendy viral "agenda nwo" paypal amazon gerald celente max keiser transaction 0 fees credit card bank bank account ceo david icke wearechange lindsey williams global currency reset federal reserve crash bubble rothschild jp morgan infowars alex jones
The regulatory crackdown hasn't quashed interest in Bitcoin on Wall Street, said Jonathan Mohan, who founded BitcoinNYC, a networking group.
David Woo, head of global rates and currencies at Bank of America Corp.'s (BAC:US) Merrill Lynch, said he thinks there is a "social dimension" to the interest in Bitcoin, because many people are suspicious of banks and the Federal Reserve's easy money since the 2008 financial crisis.
Nicholas Cary, CEO at Blockchain.info, discusses the rise of bitcoin and his company's growth as an online wallet for the digital currency
Hong Kong to welcome planet's second EVER Bitcoin ATM
Hong Kong is set to make in the crypto-currency industry after it was revealed as the location for the world's second Bitcoin ATM.
Robocoin Technologies CEO Jordan Kelley told the South China Morning Post the company is looking at several potential sites in the Chinese SAR.
"I think Hong Kong is a very progressive environment," he added. "The government takes a progressive approach to emerging technologies, and it is important to get something going in the Asian economies."
The crypto-cash point will be Asia's first and follows on from Robocoin's first Bitcoin ATM, launched in Vancouver in October 2013, which apparently took over C$1 million (£576,000) in its first month. Bitcoin crosses $1,000 on Zynga moveHigh quality global journalism requires investment. said Bobby Lee, co-founder of BTC China, one of the country's top exchanges.