Bitcoin prices experienced a sharp increase on Tuesday, reaching a peak of $35,066 before slightly pulling back to settle near $34,500 by 6:30 p.m. in Hong Kong, according to CoinGecko data. This surge in Bitcoin price is the highest since May 2022.

Ethereum, the world’s second-largest cryptocurrency, rose to as high as US$1,844, while the global cryptocurrency market was valued at over US$1.3 trillion, its highest point since April.

This renewed interest in the cryptocurrency market has been largely attributed to the potential spot Bitcoin exchange-traded fund (ETF) approvals in the U.S. and the spike in trading volumes across spot markets. Recent developments around the spot Bitcoin ETF application of BlackRock, the world’s largest fund manager, have caught the attention of many in the cryptocurrency community.

“It seems that at last, the news is being priced in. Detractors are being proven wrong, with US$400 million in short liquidation during the previous 24 hours, and retail investors are making their move to invest in the market before the institutions change the name of the game forever, with spot buys outpacing sells by 50%, said Michael Silberberg, head of investor relations at Alt Tab Capital, in a statement shared with Forkast.

On Tuesday, Eric Balchunas, ETF analyst at Bloomberg, reported that the iShares Bitcoin Trust is now listed on the Depository Trust & Clearing Corporation (DTCC) — the central clearinghouse for Nasdaq trades. This BlackRock venture, titled “IBTC,” signals progress in bringing spot Bitcoin ETFs to the market, Balchunas said on X (formerly Twitter).

The last time Bitcoin was priced this high was in May 2022, when the Terra network’s algorithmic stablecoin UST deviated from its dollar peg, wiping out billions of dollars across the crypto sector. Following this event, a prolonged bear market, or “crypto winter,” witnessed significant layoffs and saw leading businesses, including the FTX exchange, declare bankruptcy.

However, the tides may be turning, according to a recent report from investment bank Morgan Stanley.

“Signs indicate that ‘crypto winter’ — Bitcoin’s cyclical bear-market decline — may be in the past,” Denny Galindo, an analyst at Morgan Stanley, said in the report.