Is Bitcoin the New Gold as Middle East Tensions Escalate?

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With the specter of a war with Iran on the horizon, speculators on Wall Street have turned their attention to long time "safe haven" assets, such as oil and gold. With this current geopolitical uncertainty, a lot of investors have been exploring different places to put their money with cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin seeing a big bump in the last few days. 

As expected with conflict arising in the Middle East, both oil and gold saw jumps of 3% and 2% respectively. Bitcoin saw increases of as much 5% since news of the killing of Iranian General Soleimani by U.S. forces broke. 

Bitcoin was created in 2009 as a way to bypass banks and government agencies embroiled in Wall Street’s biggest period of uncertainty in decades. While it was slow to take off due to some scandals and regulatory concerns, once it broke into the mainstream it became the decades best performing asset. 

The largest digital token, trading today around $7,800, has posted gains of more than 9,000,000 percent since July 2010, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. 

At the beginning of 2017, Bitcoin was trading around $1,000. By July, it had more than doubled to over $2000. The Bitcoin "craze" was in full effect. By year-end, it creeped close to the $14,000 mark. The frenzy was somewhat short lived. By the end of 2018, Bitcoin was barely trading at $3,000. In the summer of 2019 it began another huge rally, this time reaching as high as $13,800 this past summer.

Investors will be keeping a close watch on Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies as things unfold over the next few days in the Middle East.

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