Bitcoin continued its price run higher in Thursday morning trading in Asia as it neared US$21,000. Ether and the rest of the top 10 cryptocurrencies by market capitalization, excluding stablecoins, also rose. The total crypto market cap exceeded US$1 trillion for the first time since mid-September. Leading memecoin Dogecoin was the best performer, while the Shiba Inu token also rose, overtaking Tron by market cap.

See related article: Cash App users can now receive Bitcoin via the Lightning Network

Fast facts

  • Bitcoin gained 3.6% to US$20,798 in the 24 hours to 8:15 a.m. in Hong Kong, reaching as high as US$20,938 overnight, its highest in eight weeks, according to data from CoinMarketCap. Ether performed even better, adding 7.5% to US$1,569, after hitting US$1,584 overnight, its highest since last month’s network Merge.
  • The gains come amid Tuesday’s update to Block Inc.’s popular payment app, Cash App, which now allows users to send, buy, and receive Bitcoin using the network’s secondary payments layer Lightning Network.
  • Dogecoin gained 15.4% to trade at US$0.07 — its highest price since mid-August — as Dogecoin advocate Elon Musk was set to close the US$44 billion deal to buy the social media platform Twitter Inc. The world’s richest man used the platform to post a video of himself carrying a sink into Twitter’s headquarters on Wednesday along with the caption “Entering Twitter HQ — let that sink in!”
  • Copycat memecoin, Shiba Inu token, also gained, rising 6.1% to trade at US$0.00001077. Cardano added 0.9% to US$0.40, while Solana rose 1.4% to US$31.32.
  • U.S. equities had a down-arrow day Wednesday. The Nasdaq Composite Index lost 2%, the S&P 500 Index slipped 0.7% and the Dow Jones Industrial Average was little changed, rising 0.01%. Shares in Meta Platforms Inc. (formerly Facebook) plunged more than 19% to six-year lows of US$115 in after-hours trading after reporting Q3 2022 earnings were less than half of the same quarter last year, driven largely by a drop in advertising revenue.
  • As central banks worldwide have been raising interest rates to combat global inflation, the Bank of Canada offered some positive news to investors on Wednesday, raising interest rates by just 50 basis points, instead of the expected 75 basis points, bringing the total rate to 3.75%. 

See related article: Elon Musk faces possible class-action lawsuit over Dogecoin losses