Bitcoin Surges Above $48,000, Turns Positive for 2022

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The price of bitcoin jumped Monday following a slew of bullish developments for the cryptocurrency, even as investors continue to monitor developments in the war in Ukraine and moves by the Federal Reserve.

Bitcoin extended gains from a late Sunday rally, when the cryptocurrency broke past the key level of $45,000 and erased its losses for 2022. It last traded 6.7% higher at $47,914.35, according to Coin Metrics. Earlier in the day it traded above $48,000, for the first time since Dec. 31.

The digital currency has been rising since Friday, gaining nearly 7% in that time.

"Throughout the last six months, crypto has shown its resilience and relevancy, even as strong macroeconomic headwinds have disrupted traditional markets by remaining within range. Now, crypto is center stage with its biggest opportunity to shine," said Chris Kline, chief operating officer and co-founder of Bitcoin IRA, told CNBC's "Crypto World."

"Crypto is not trading in a vacuum," he added. "Geopolitical uncertainty, inflation, and a serious potential for a recession are giving both retail and institutional investors a reason to build a defensive strategy. Crypto is playing an integral role in that plan."

While there isn't one particular catalyst for the moves, there have been several bullish developments for bitcoin in the past week alone showing evidence of institutional demand for more exposure to the digital asset.

For example, Goldman Sachs last week became the first major U.S. bank to trade bitcoin over the counter, and Cowen said it will soon allow institutional clients spot bitcoin trading. Ray Dalio's Bridgewater has also said it's about to make an investment into a crypto fund.

"The ongoing capital splash into the digital currency is a sign that investors do not want to take a back seat in a price movement that could push bitcoin to a height not seen since November 2021," said Alexander Mamasidikov, co-founder of the mobile digital bank MinePlex.

Terra, the network behind the Luna token, is also building a $10 billion bitcoin reserve fund for its stablecoin TUSD. It has been buying more bitcoin for it each day, including more than $100 million in bitcoin on Monday.

Yuya Hasegawa, crypto market analyst at Japanese bitcoin exchange Bitbank, noted that the bitcoin futures market was accumulating short positions when the price fluctuated below $40,000, which resulted in about $71 million in liquidations on Sunday.

"From a technical perspective, bitcoin has broken out of an ascending triangle, which signals an upward trend, and likely will continue to rally in the short term," he said.

He added the market should proceed with caution ahead of the Personal Consumption Expenditures report and jobs report later this week, noting that the results could lead to a 50 basis point rate hike at the next FOMC meeting. Last week, Fed chair Jerome Powell vowed to be tough on inflation and said rate increases could become more aggressive if necessary.

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