Off the Leash? Bitcoin Looks North After Breaking $16K

Bitcoin is gaining altitude today, amid a sharp drop in prices of some alternative currencies.

Prices on CoinDesk’s Bitcoin Price Index jumped 7 percent to an intraday high of $16,181 in the last two hours. The cryptocurrency has appreciated by 10 percent in the last 24 hours, according to data source CoinMarketCap.

Meanwhile, Ripple’s XRP token has depreciated by 9 percent in the last 24 hours, having soared to new heights on Jan. 3.

Other alternative currencies like NEM (XEM), Cardano (ADA) and Stellar (STR) are down at least 12 percent each. More importantly, the XRP/BTC (ripple-bitcoin) pair has taken a beating in the last couple of hours. XEM/BTCADA/BTCETH/BTC (ethereum-bitcoin) and LTC/BTC (litecoin-bitcoin) are also losing altitude.

So, bitcoin (BTC) seems to have caught a bid wave at $14,848.10 (07:29 UTC), tracking the weakness in the cross cryptocurrency pairs (ETH/BTC, LTC/BTC, XRP/BTC) – that is, money made from the altcoin rally is likely being channeled back into BTC.

Price chart analysis also suggests BTC could extend the rally to $18,000-$18,600 in the short-run…

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