London: Cryptocurrency Bitcoin on Friday has hit yet another record high and moved within sight of a market capitalisation of USD 1 trillion, blithely shrugging off analyst warnings that it is an “economic side show” and a poor hedge against a fall in stock prices. Also Read – Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos Reclaims Title of World’s Richest Person after Elon Musk Loses $4.6 Billion

Two days ago, the most popular cryptocurrency had jumped 2.6% to an all-time high of USD 52,932, setting it on course for a weekly jump of over 8%. It has surged around 60% so far this month. Also Read – Gaining Acceptance Among Investors? Bitcoin Breaks Above USD 50,000 For First Time

From Tesla and Mastercard to BNY Mellon, Bitcoin’s increasing trade have been fuelled by signs it is winning acceptance among mainstream investors and companies. Also Read – Elon Musk to Make Tesla Cars in Karnataka: CM Yediyurappa

Many analysts and investors remain sceptical of the patchily-regulated and highly volatile digital asset, which is still little used for commerce.

Other investors are of opinion that bitcoin’s volatility presents a hurdle for its ambitions to become a widespread means of payment.

The development comes after Tesla boss Elon Musk this week aid owning the digital coin was only a little better than holding cash. He also defended Tesla’s recent purchase of $1.5 billion of bitcoin, which ignited mainstream interest in the digital currency.

Notably, Bitcoin is rallying as more companies signal the volatile digital currency could eventually gain widespread acceptance as a legitimate means of payment. Bitcoin has been mostly seen as a store of value, like gold, with few places accepting it in exchange for goods or services.

Companies have been leery because Bitcoin’s volatility and its use by parties who want to avoid the traditional banking system for a myriad of reasons.

Then Blue Ridge Bank of Charlottesville, Virginia, said that it would become the first commercial bank to provide access to Bitcoin at its branches. The regional bank said Wednesday that cardholders can purchase and redeem Bitcoin at 19 of its ATMs.

BNY Mellon, the oldest bank in the US, followed a day later, saying it would include digital currencies in the services it provides to clients. Mastercard said it would start supporting select crypto currencies on its network.

Lee Reiners, who teaches fintech and cryptocurrency courses at Duke University School of Law, said BNY Mellon’s move makes sense because there are now numerous high-net-worth individuals and investment funds embracing crypto as an asset class to be added to their portfolio.