Fx168 financial news (Hong Kong) by bitcoin continued to rise, the world’s second largest digital currency Ethereum (February 18) hit a record high on Thursday. According to coindesk, Ethereum hit $1918.52 in early Asian trading, but then scaled back some of its gains. As of 12:14 p.m. Hong Kong time, the price of Ethereum rose about 8% to US $1883.58. Ethereum’s price is up 160% so far this year, while bitcoin’s price has soared 78% in the same period. But it was bitcoin’s rebound, which topped $52000 for the first time on Wednesday, that helped push up the value of ether. “Compared with bitcoin’s $52000 level, the price of the world’s second-largest digital currency is still very cheap, and may soar next.” Jehan Chu, co-founder of kenetic capital, a cryptocurrency focused venture capital firm, told CNBC. Ethereum is the digital currency supporting Ethereum network. Developers can build applications on the Ethereum network. As a result, Ethereum is a decentralized software platform, which is different from bitcoin. It is designed as a means of storing money or value. But it is similar to bitcoin in that it is supported by so-called blockchain technology. Although Thursday’s price rise was not caused by a single factor, there are some developments behind it. Last year, an upgrade called Ethereum 2.0 was launched for the network. Supporters believe that this will help Ethereum and coin Ethereum become bigger. The upgrade is still in progress. This month, the derivatives exchange, the Chicago Mercantile Exchange (CME), launched Ethereum futures, which may open the door to more institutional investors. “Despite complaints about the cost of Ethereum’s network, it remains the preferred destination for all blockchain applications,” Chu said. More violent explosion of digital currency? Bitcoin hit a record high of $51721 on signs that the cryptocurrency is being accepted by mainstream investors and companies such as Tesla, MasterCard and Bank of New York Mellon. Bitcoin is the world’s largest digital currency, with a market value of over $900 billion. Black rock’s global fixed income chief investment officer, Rick Rieder, told CNBC on Wednesday that the company had begun “small-scale involvement” in bitcoin. Bitcoin hit a record high on Wednesday after breaking the $50000 mark the day before, but analysts warned about the sustainability of bitcoin prices in such a volatile market. Mark haefele, chief investment officer at UBS wealth management, said: “we advise investors not to see this as a ‘mainstream moment’ for cryptocurrencies and to be cautious before speculating because cryptocurrencies are not a currency.” “We also believe that companies that already have an internal payment ecosystem will not join the cryptocurrency boom.” “Over the past few months, as institutional investor interest has increased significantly, we have been keeping a close eye on the apparent imbalance between supply and demand,” said Brian Melville, strategic director of Cumberland, cryptocurrency unit of Chicago trading company DRW.