Bitcoin, the virtual currency gaining ground around the world, has crossed $1000 for the first time in history. On Mt Gox, the world’s biggest Bitcoin exchange, the price is $1,080 as of this writing. The average price on other exchanges is close to $1000, but is hovering around the $990 mark as of this writing.

The total Bitcoin market is estimated to be around $11 billion at the current value. CoinMonk, an Indian website aimed at creating awareness for the currency has put Bitcoin’s value at around $1077.

Physical versions of the bitcoin are available at Casascius (Image credit: Casascius)

Physical versions of the bitcoin are available at Casascius (Image credit: Casascius)

The massive price hike of recent weeks has come largely thanks to the first US Congressional hearing on Bitcoin coupled with its rising popularity in China. In October, one Bitcoin was worth around $200 and the value has skyrocketed by more than five times over the past month.

It is believed that interest from investors in Bitcoin-based startups in Silicon Valley has increased the buzz around Bitcoin, something that wasn’t tempered down by the high-profile bust of underground website Silk Road, arguably the biggest marketplace for the currency. The question now is whether the massive spike will sustain or will the Bitcoin bubble deflate. The massive hike could lead to a lot of Bitcoin owners selling their coins to cash in on the boom, leading to a fall in value eventually.

Bangalore will host India’s first Global Bitcoin Conference next month, where a number of industry leaders, banking authorities and Bitcoin enthusiasts are expected to gather and discuss the potential of the virtual currency.

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