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Bitcoin just snuck its head above $18,000

Cryptocurrency Bitcoin this morning smashed through the $18,..

Cryptocurrency Bitcoin this morning smashed through the $18,000 (£13,500) barrier for the first time.

Around 10:20 am (UK time) the controversial currency nudged over the mark. It remained higher than $18,000 for around five minutes before falling back to $17,990 at 11:30 am, according to the Coindesk BPI.

(Source: Coindesk)

Read more: Andrew Bailey: Bitcoin investors should be prepared to lose all their money

Bitcoin had threatened to reach $18,000 yesterday morning, reaching around $17,900. Bitcoin futures contracts have changed hands for $18,000 at the start of the week, however, this is the first time the spot rate has gone above such a level.

The new price highs come after the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) yesterday published feedback from a discussion paper issued earlier this year on the technology that underpins cryptocurrencies.

Respondents said current FCA rules "are flexible enough to accommodate" the use of distributed ledger technology. Others, however, doubted whether blockchain-style technology was "compatible" with the FCA's regulatory regime.

(Source: Coindesk)

On Thursday evening, FCA boss Andrew Bailey warned bitcoin investors should "be prepared to lose" all their money. Like many financial regulators, the FCA does not regulate bitcoin. However, Bailey did stress bitcoin is not "prevalent enough to be a systemic threat" to financial markets.

Bitcoin was given a big boost at the start of the week after the Chicago Board Options Exchange began allowing the trading of bitcoin futures.

Read more: Bitcoin futures being considered by Deutsche Boerse

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