The value of the second largest cryptocurrency ethereum has smashed an all-time high of $425.55 on Thursday night, according to data from digital money website Coinmarketcap.
Ethereum’s market capitalization is approaching $40 billion, and its gains this year have reached 5,000 percent. At the start of 2017, you could buy one token for $8.27.
The surge came after the news that South Korea has no plans to regulate cryptocurrencies. Choe Heung-sik, chief of South Korea’s Financial Supervisory Service (FSS), said that since the agency does not view virtual cash as "legitimate currency," the FSS does not intend to supervise trading of the digital assets.
The Korean won had more than five percent share in global cryptocurrency trading as of September, a higher percentage than the euro.
Bitcoin was also trading at near all-time high at $8,293. The record is $8,380. The total market cap of cryptocurrencies was $256 billion, worth more than AT&T or Procter & Gamble.
A surge in ethereum was also backed by bullish comments from billionaire cryptocurrency investor Mike Novogratz.
“Just in the last few days ethereum has started to move, and I actually think it’s going to put a new high soon. I think we end the year at close to $500 in Ethereum,” he predicted at Bloomberg TV.
He also forecast that bitcoin would pass the $10,000 mark by year-end.
Novogratz said investors are putting money into cryptocurrencies like bitcoin because of the lack of trust in financial institutions following the 2008 economic meltdown.