Bitcoin continued its most recent surge on Tuesday, topping $5,900 before falling slightly.
The cryptocurrency has risen about 3% this week and is up close to 20% since April 1, when a private investor reportedly purchased $100 million in cryptocurrency.
Cryptocurrency prices have been on an upward arc since the beginning of the year after losing about 75% of their value in 2018. They are now at their highest level since last November. “The crypto winter is thawing and we’re seeing steady price appreciation,” Joe DiPasquale, the founder and CEO of BitBull Capital, a San Francisco-based manager of cryptocurrency hedge funds, told TheStreet.
DiPasquale and other observers say that the most recent increase stems at least partly from news on Monday that Fidelity would be launching crypto trading in a few weeks. The financial services firm’s interest in the industry has been widely followed as a bellwether of wider acceptance. The company began a custody service for cryptocurrency earlier this year.
In recent months, other major financial services firms have also added crypto services. These include brokerage firms eTrade, Robin Hood, and banking giant JP Morgan Chase (JPM – Get Report) , which announced in February that it would become the first bank to back a cryptocurrency, the JPMCoin.
These initiatives come as institutional and retail investors grow comfortable not only with cryptocurrency as an investment but also with the blockchain technology upon which it is based. A Fidelity study released May 2 found that nearly half of institutional investors see cryptocurrency as a worthwhile investment. The survey of more than 400 institutional investors found that more than one in five already invest in digital assets with another four in 10 open to such an investment over the next five years.
“More institutional investors are engaging with digital assets, either directly or through service providers, as the potential impact of blockchain technology on financial…