BTC/USD: Bitcoin Price Consolidates Above $600

The price of bitcoin continued to hold above $600 Wednesday, as the market consolidated in a familiar range after a series of sharp fluctuations earlier this month.

The BTC/USD exchange rate was last down 0.2% to $603.40, according to CoinDesk. It traded within a narrow daily range of $602.27 and $604.76. Price activity has been much less volatile this week, signaling that large investors remained on the sidelines.

The BTC/USD is currently trading right around the 21-DMA. A further acceleration above current levels could provide a short-term boost that would lead to a retest of September highs above $620.

The US dollar was trading slightly higher against a basket of other major fiat currencies. The dollar index inched up 0.1% to 95.55, putting it on track for its second consecutive gain.

Needham Company, a New York-based asset management firm, recently forecast that bitcoin would reach as high as $848 in the short-term, up from a prior estimate of $655. The BTC/USD has already traded above $700 this year before negative news events dragged the digital currency lower.

Bitcoin’s ledger technology has created new opportunities for traditional financial players to boost transparency and enable easier cross-border transactions. On Tuesday, New York-based CLS Group announced that its clients will be able to access its currency service through a distributed ledger. CLS settles the majority of global currency transactions.

Last week, San Francisco-based payments company Ripple Labs said seven global banks, including Bank of America Merrill Lynch, were using its ledger technology.

Unlike conventional payment systems that rely on a central authority to monitor transactions, distributed ledgers are shared among all market participants, thereby simplifying the trades. It was bitcoin’s blockchain technology that first unveiled this opportunity to traditional financial service players.

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