Bitcoin surges to a new all-time high at $6,345

CME announces plans to launch bitcoin futures in the fourth quarter of 2017.
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The price of bitcoin has set a new all-time high after the world's leading and most diverse derivatives marketplace, announced it intends to launch bitcoin futures in the fourth quarter of 2017, pending all relevant regulatory review periods.

Bloomberg reports that the Chicago Mercantile Exchange (CME) had earlier declared plans to introduce bitcoin futures by end of next month, after previously dismissing such an idea. Soon after the announcement, Bitcoin surged to a record high of $6,306.58 on the CoinDesk Bitcoin Price Index at 20:30 UTC yesterday before touching an all time high of $6345.

To recall, bitcoin rose more than sixfold earlier this year, just last week crossed the $6,000-mark for the first time. According to Bloomberg, the world’s largest exchange owner reversed course after its rival had indicated earlier this year ‘that it was going to begin a Bitcoin futures contract by year-end or early 2018, and awaits approval from the Commodity Futures Trading Commission.’

Chicago Mercantile Exchange

Chicago Mercantile Exchange

"Given increasing client interest in the evolving cryptocurrency markets, we have decided to introduce a bitcoin futures contract," said Terry Duffy, CME Group Chairman and CEO. "As the world's largest regulated FX marketplace, CME Group is the natural home for this new vehicle that will provide investors with transparency, price discovery and risk transfer capabilities."

Cryptocurrency market capitalization has grown in recent years to $172 billion, with bitcoin representing more than 54 percent of that total, or $94 billion. The bitcoin spot market has also grown to trade roughly $1.5 billion in notional value each day, CME said in a statement.

Several analysts pointed out that recent rise in the world’s largest cryptocurrency were a result of a wide range of factors including China resuming cryptocurrency trading and the likelihood of the cryptocurrency receiving the exchange-traded (ETF) approval. Also recently, the South Korean government declared its intentions to adopt  the cryptocurrency as a commodity and regulate the market efficiently to protect users, investors and businesses.