LONDON (Reuters) – Bitcoin fell below $ 11,000 on Monday, surpbading the record high of nearly $ 11,800 reached on Sunday after an increase of less than $ 1,000 earlier this year.
The cryptocurrency, which is marketed 24 hours a day and seven days a week, it climbed as high as $ 11,799.99 on the Bitstamp stock exchange based in Luxembourg at around 2100 GMT on Sunday.
It was not clear what caused the movement over the weekend other than new investors who joined the upstart market, with the so-called wallet providers reporting a record number of registrations during the past week.
Analysts said Friday's announcement by the top US derivatives regulator that it would allow CME Group Inc and CBOE Global Markets to quote bitcoin futures contracts had taken a positive turn after a hectic week.
"The price increases are triggered by the continued interest of the media driven by the expectation of futures trading in CME," said Charles Hayter, founder of the Cryptocompare data badysis website.
At 13:10 GMT on Monday, bitcoin had retreated to around $ 10,919, down 2 percent on the day, but still more than 100 percent in the last three weeks. Sunday's high marked an increase of 1,121 percent since the beginning of the year.
Think Markets badyst Naeem Aslam said Britain wants to increase the regulation of bitcoin and other digital currencies by expanding the scope of the European Union's anti-money laundering rules that force operators to disclose their identities and report on activities suspicious its ups and downs
But others said that more regulatory scrutiny would help.
"In any case, regulation will only increase bitcoin's growth rate since regulation gives credibility and generates trust," said Nicholas Gregory, executive director of the CommerceBlock cryptocurrency firm, based in London.
Sunday's record for bitcoin came when Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro announced the launch of the "petro", which he said would be a cryptocurrency backed by oil reserves, to shore up a collapsed economy.
Opposition leaders said the digital currency would need congressional approval and some question whether it would ever see the light in the midst of turmoil.
Report of Jemima Kelly; edition of Alexander Smith