The price of bitcoin hit yet-another new record high today, briefly surpassing $50,000 around 9:30 p.m. EST.

As when it broke through $40,000 for the first time on Feb. 8, support from Elon Musk through a significant investment from Tesla Inc. is being attributed to the rise, though other major companies are also reported to be taking an interest.

CNBC reported that major companies continue to be warming to cryptocurrencies, noting that Mastercard Inc. announced last week that it will open up its network to select cryptocurrencies and that PayPal Holdings Inc. and BNY Mellon have also made moves to support crypto.

Even if broader corporate and institutional interest in bitcoin is a driving factor in bitcoin’s continued rise, the Elon Musk effect cannot be understated. Tesla stated in its annual report filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange today that it has put an aggregate of $1.5 billion into bitcoin under a new investment policy and that the company may “acquire and hold digital assets from time to time in the long term.” Telsa is also said to be considering accepting payments in bitcoin in exchange for products on a limited basis.

With the price of bitcoin continuing to rise, Tesla is also sitting on a solid profit from its investment. Tesla didn’t report the price at which it purchased bitcoin, but it’s known to have made its purchase in January when bitcoin prices traded between $29,333 and $37,020.

Yahoo Finance noted that the purchase could have seen Tesla purchase between 37,020 and 51,137 bitcoin at an average of 44,079. At the top of the range, Telsa has already booked a profit of $980 million while at the bottom of the range $290 million — either way a healthy profit for a company that is only profitable thanks to carbon credit sales.

Also joining in supporting bitcoin are self-managed “super” funds in Australia; super refers to superannuation, Australia’s version of 401(k) retirement plans. “Previously trade sizes for SMSFs were in the tens of thousands of dollars, but we’re now seeing in the hundreds of thousands of dollars,” Caroline Bowler, chief executive officer of BTC Markets Pty Ltd., told the Australian Financial Review. “Bitcoin as a store of value is interesting to SMSF holders. People are researching it and getting better educated around it. They look at it as a deflationary asset, and I think they understand the concept behind that.”

For those who have been following bitcoin and cryptocurrency for a long time, the current uptick does look an awful lot like 2016. Before the current surge bitcoin peaked at just below $20,000 on Jan. 1, 2017, and then took until Dec. 16 last year to break through the $20,000 mark after having dropped as low as just above $30,000.

Others argue that things are different this time around. “Growing corporate support for the crypto makes this a very different market to what it was in 2017,” Neil Wilson, chief market analyst at trading platform provider TradeTech Markets (BVI) Ltd., told Business Insider.

Bitcoin was trading at $49,402.47 as of 10:28 p.m. EST.

Image: FreeIMG

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