Investing.com – Bitcoin surged to another all-time high on Friday amid ongoing bullish sentiment on the digital currency after futures markets regulator CME Group recently announced plans to launch bitcoin futures in the fourth quarter.
On the U.S.-based Bitfinex exchange, bitcoin rose to $7251, up $232.1, or 3.31% after hitting an all-time high of $7448. The rally in bitcoin saw its market cap surge above $120 billion for the first time.
Bitcoin has recorded several all-time highs this week as investors anticipated an uptick in institutional demand for the digital currency after the CME grouped announce plans to launch bitcoin futures.
The record high in bitcoin comes two weeks ahead of an upcoming split or fork of the underlying software supporting the bitcoin network as the next iteration of the Segregated Witness update – Segwit2x – is slated to activate.
SegWit2x aims to speed up transactions on the bitcoin network by increasing the size of “blocks” – files that store information on the network – from one megabyte to two megabytes (hence, the 2x).
Bitcoin transactions are limited to 1-megabyte every 10 minutes – or seven transactions per second. This compares to 2,000 per second for Visa and means that at peak times bitcoin transactions can take hours to be fulfilled, inhibiting the currency.
Ethereum, the second largest cryptocurrencies by market cap, fell 4.12% to $297.00