Bitcoin climbed to a one-week high as risk appetite in markets returned, and investors considered the regulatory issues facing cryptocurrencies.
The digital token climbed 7% to trade above $50,000 in early London trading. On Tuesday, prices dipped 2.9% after Gary Gensler, nominee for chairman of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, said that making sure crypto markets are free of fraud and manipulation is a challenge to the agency.
During the Obama administration, Gensler, who served as a Commodity Futures Trading Commission chairman, has been viewed as a strong advocate for digital assets. He serves as a senior advisor to the MIT Media Lab Digital Currency Initiative. He teaches about blockchain technology and digital currencies.
“While the Bitcoin market reacted quickly to his comments, Gensler was largely positive about Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies,” said John Wu, president of blockchain technology firm Ava Labs. “I’m hopeful the new administration will help foster innovation in blockchains, cryptocurrencies and digital assets, instead of stifling it.”