On Friday, Bitcoin reached an all-time high of nearly $8,000. Discussions of a software upgrade that caused the cryptocurrency to plunge last week was now in fact underway.
The upgrade which may divide bitcoin or “fork” into two forms was announced on the Coinbase website. If a bitcoin duplicate is developed, current holders would also theoretically gain holdings into the new form. Coinbase is the world’s chief bitcoin company that operates in thirty-two countries. “The Bitcoin Segwit2x fork is expected to occur in the next six hours,” the statement was published at 1004 GMT.
Bitcoin has had a volatile week dropping to as low as $5,555 after plans for Segwit2x were suspended and then has rallied over forty percent since Sunday. On the Luxembourg-based Bitstamp exchange, it touched $7,997 during early Asian trading prior to sliding back to trading flat at $7,863.
Market-watchers believe that the rumor about the division was responsible for pushing bitcoin to new highs. If things happen as anticipated, investors of the cryptocurrency would have the ability to trade the duplicate at a profit if the market assigns it a value. The company’s communications director, David Farmer, stated that Coinbase did not anticipate the upgrade to fork the cryptocurrency in two, as it doesn’t possess support from the network to do so.
Farmer stated the Coinbase was aggressively observing the process and that funds stored in the company’s wallets will not be affected. All purchasing and selling of bitcoin will be suspended on Coinbase for about an hour prior to the fork, anticipated between 1400 and 1600 GMT.
“Whenever people hear ‘fork’ nowadays the price jumps, as people hope to get the free dividend,” said Charles Hayter, cryptocurrency analyst. “There is also a resulting spike in demand for people entering bitcoin” from other cryptocurrencies.
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Bitcoin is has gained over 700 percent this year.