Bitcoin hits record high, nears $300 billion market capitalization
The digital currency bitcoin rallied on Monday, hitting its latest in a series of records in the first full day of trading for bitcoin futures. The price of a single bitcoin BTCUSD-1.96% rose 14.5% to $17,209.28, according to data and news website Coindesk. Earlier, it hit a record of $17,382.64, which represented a new high for the world’s largest cryptocurrency, taking out a record hit last Thursday. At its current size, bitcoin has a market capitalization of $290.6 billion, according to CoinMarketCap. Only 10 components of the S&P 500 have a higher market cap. On Sunday, Cboe Global Markets launched its bitcoin futures contract, which allows leveraged bets on the price of bitcoin. The introduction of futures was seen as a legitimizing milestone in the history of bitcoin, which has been soaring all year. The digital currency ended 2016 below $1,000, and has soared more than 17-fold since then. The S&P 500 SPX+0.32% rose 0.3% on Monday, bringing its year-to-date advance to 18.8%. The Dow Jones Industrial AverageDJIA+0.23% closed 0.2% higher on the day. Both ended at records.