Price of bitcoin over $10,000 as rally gains pace

LONDON - The price of bitcoin, the most widely used virtual currency, has risen above $10,000 for the first time, breaking a symbolic threshold in what has been a vertiginous ascent this year.

The cost of buying one bitcoin as measured by the website rose was at $10,673 by morning trading in Europe. At the start of the year, it was valued at about $1,000.

Virtual currencies have been the subject of much debate this year, with the CEO of JPMorgan Chase calling bitcoin a "fraud" but other executives saying it should not be dismissed.

Bitcoin and other virtual currencies were initially used primarily to buy illegal goods and services online. In recent years, they have become a hot investment among speculators.

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