Investing.com – Bitcoin rose on Wednesday amid reports that Germany’s Deutsche Boerse was exploring the opportunity to launch bitcoin futures, while Ethereum eased form record highs amid profit taking.
On the U.S.-based Bitfinex exchange, bitcoin rose to $16,380, up $199, or 1.23% after hitting an all-time high of $17,579 on Tuesday. The popular digital currency market cap fell to $277 billion.
“We are thinking about futures, with which private investors and institutional investors can protect existing investments in Bitcoin or set for falling prices of the cyber currency,” a spokeswoman for the exchange told the German business magazine Wirtschaftswoche.
Should the German exchange decided to proceed with the launch of bitcoin futures it would become the first European exchange to list futures of the bitcoin after the digital currency debuted on the CBOE platform on Sunday. The news comes just days ahead of CME Group’s launch of bitcoin futures slated for Dec. 18.
The launch of futures trading has drawn a mixed reaction from investors, as it provides market participants with the option to place bearish bets on bitcoin, which could pressure the price of digital currency. Other market participants believe, however, that the launch of futures paves the way for bitcoin to become an established asset class, which would spur institutional demand.
"I think a lot of this is simply the market better understanding the realities of digital assets performance (speed, throughput etc)," Ripple CEO Brad Garlinghouse told Business Insider on Wednesday. "There is - appropriately - a lot of excitement about the potential - but XRP is very uniquely positioned to actually be able to deliver on the promise."
Ethereum, the second largest cryptocurrency by market cap, fell 2.99% to $671, as investors took profits on the recent rally which saw the cryptocurrency surged to an all-time high $760 amid reports that Swiss banking giant UBS would lead an Ethereum-based blockchain platform.
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