Ether Surges Past $4,000

Cryptocurrency ether broke past $4,000 on Monday, climbing to a new peak for a third session in a row.

The surge is said to be spurn by bets it may find new uses, lifting other digital currencies in its wake.

Bitcoin hit a three-week high and parody currency dogecoin steadied, arresting a sharp drop after comments from Tesla chief Elon Musk sent it tumbling on Sunday.

Ether, traded using the ethereum blockchain, was last up around 6% for the day on the Binance exchange where it hit $4,119 around midday in Asia.

Bitcoin rose to $59,603 and dogecoin steadied around $0.54.

Bitcoin has doubled, ether has soared more than fivefold this year and dogecoin more than a hundredfold as a euphoric mood has spilled over from bitcoin into other crypto assets.

The ethereum blockchain has been recently upgraded, which traders think might make it a central player in a trend called “DeFi” or decentralised finance, where digital platforms chip away at banks’ dominance of financial transactions.

The sum of ether tokens in circulation is $477 billion according to CoinMarketCap, compared with $1.1 trillion for bitcoin and $69 billion for dogecoin.

Trade in dogecoin, launched as a joke currency with a dog mascot, has concerned analysts as it is mostly impossible to spend and gains are being driven by a speculative frenzy.

It fell by a third in Sunday trade after Musk, a crypto investor, described it as a “hustle” during a television appearance, but it seemed to find support after he tweeted that his SpaceX rocket company would accept it as payment.

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