For comparison, gold is down about 5 percent on the year, and slightly negative on the month.
Some have attributed the size of the recent jump to investors’ fear of missing out (FOMO), while others such as “Fast Money” trader Brian Kelly point to ecosystem headlines like the Winklevoss twins launching their exchange and the Digital Currency Group announcing funding from Bain and MasterCard.
But bitcoin has boasted a steady parade of media highlights and major investments from important financial firms all year, so it’s not immediately obvious why this past month would mark a turning point.
Read More Why financial firms are investigating bitcoin tech
Brendan O’Connor, the CEO of bitcoin trading firm Genesis Global Trading, told CNBC he has no easy answers about the price jump. Although he said rumors were flying around the community about international rings of traders teaming up to drive up the exchange rate, O’Connor was unable to confirm anything he’d heard.
For its part, Genesis Global is experiencing a “dramatic increase in activity” from renewed interest in bitcoin as a tradable asset, O’Connor said.