The highest valued cryptocurrency outside of bitcoin, known as ether, hit a new all time high price of $1,417 on Wednesday after rising more than 60 per cent in only one week.
The cryptocurrency, based on the ethereum blockchain, fell back a small amount from that high to trade at $1,358 by 2pm in UK, according to CoinMarketCap, a website that follows cryptocurrency prices. This means the total value of ether in circulation today stands at just under $132bn, behind bitcoin’s $240bn.
Ripple’s XRP, briefly knocked ether from second place in the list after a surge last week, but it has now fallen back sharply in it’s correction.
Smaller cryptos are rising as speculators have moved money away from bitcoin in the hope of similarly huge gains. Crypto traders who invested money in bitcoin at the beginning of 2017 saw 15 times returns by the end of the year.
Ether’s ascent has come despite some worries being raised about the technology behind the ethereum network. The cryptocurrency was taken down from Bittrex, a major coin exchange, over the weekend after a glitch caused transaction prices to spike.