Market Overview

Bitcoin Soars to All-Time High as 'Silk Road' Reopens

Bitcoin Soars to All-Time High as 'Silk Road' Reopens

Silk Road, the anonymous internet marketplace mostly used for sale of illegal drugs, reopened its doors on Wednesday --  just a month after its shutdown by U.S. law enforcement.

According to the site's new administrator,  the new Silk Road improves upon the old version with more secure identity protection and additional measures to keep the bitcoins safe, in the case the site closes down.

Related: Will Bitcoin Die WIth the Online Black Market 'Silk Road'?

Bitcoin jumped to a record high that same day, rising up to $270 from around $100 few weeks back. It continues to rise at $309 as of Thursday on Mt.Gox, a bitcoin trading platform.

The analysts state the closing of the original Silk Road boosted global awareness of the bitcoin, in addition to showing investors that the digital currency is more stable and removed from online drug trading than expected.

In the past few weeks, many online vendors including Reddit and WordPress started accepting bitcoin. While many are calling the move towards bitcoin a publicity stunt it does seem to be gaining traction, with internet giants like Baidu (NASDAQ: BIDU) starting to accept bitcoins on select services.

Bitcoin has also seen a huge surge in traffic in BTC China, a primary bitcoin trading platform in China, making it the world’s largest Bitcoin exchange.

Senate hearings focused on bitcoin are expected to be held within this month, and Senator Tom Carper, Chairman of the Senate Homeland Security and Government Affairs Committee, displayed more accepting attitude towards bitcoins:

“Rather than play ‘whack-a-mole’ with the latest website, currency, or other method criminals are using in an effort to evade the law," he said, "we need to develop thoughtful, nimble and sensible federal policies that protect the public without stifling innovation and economic growth. Our committee intends to have that conversation – among others - at our hearing this month on virtual currency.”


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