In late 2017, bitcoin could do no wrong. Between October and December of that year, the cryptocurrency, which by then had become a household name, soared from around $4,300 to a peak price of $17,060 on December 11, 2017 (according to pricing data from CoinDesk). But 2018 was not kind to the currency, seeing its value plummet to as low as $3,295 by December of that year.
Now, however, it seems like bitcoin has found the lost mojo in its step. Since its $3,715 price point on January 1, 2019, the cryptocurrency has skyrocketed 170%. By 5:30 a.m. Hong Kong time today, a single bitcoin was worth $11,307.69, according to CNBC. Since that high, bitcoin’s price has slipped slightly to $10,821.98 at the time of this writing. However, the resurgence in its value this year is nothing short of amazing considering how quickly bitcoin’s value depreciated in 2018.
That’s not to say bitcoin is a safe bet again (if it ever was). As 2017 and 2018 showed, investing in the cryptocurrency can be a highly volatile proposition and you could quickly lose most of your investment in a matter of days if finicky traders get spooked by the constantly evolving world of cryptocurrencies.
While bitcoin might be rising again now—and it is at its highest point since March 2018—the crypto is fraught with hurdles ahead of it including increased regulation by governments around the world and the launch of new coins on an almost weekly basis. The latest bitcoin competitor? None other than Facebook’s Libra cryptocurrency, which is scheduled to debut in 2020 with the intentions, Facebook hopes, of becoming the de facto leader of cryptocurrencies across the world.
For today though, bitcoin owners who stuck with the currency during the last tumultuous year have something to celebrate.