South Africa

Ether currency jumps up 14% after plunge

INTERNATIONAL – The second-biggest cryptocurrency surged as much as 14 percent to $206 (R3050.94) as of 10:05 a.m. in New York. 

Ether had crashed 85 percent this year, raising concerns about its viability after an eye-popping rally took if from less than $10 at the start of 2017 to as high as $1,300 in January, according to CoinMarketCap.

Bitcoin, the largest digital token, added 3 percent to $6,497.

Regulatory uncertainty, disappointment that mainstream adoption of cryptocurrencies has been slower than some anticipated and concern that institutional investors are getting cold feet, contrary to last year’s expectations that they were almost ready to jump in, are weighing on Ether and the broader market. 

One of the differences for the token built to run what’s known as Ethereum’s world computer, is that some of the startups who used it to raise funds have started to cash out.

Ethereum is the platform where a large majority of decentralized applications are built and ICOs to fund them helped fuel last year’s cryptocurrency boom, as traders flocked to buy the hundreds of new digital coins springing up. 

Very few of those applications have gained mainstream adoption and most haven’t even released a product. A Satis Group report earlier this year said about 80 percent of ICOs were outright scams.

- BLOOMBERG

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