New Delhi, December 7: Ahead of the launch of Bitcoin futures on major exchanges this Sunday, cryptocurrency bitcoin on Thursday crossed the $15,000 mark for the first time ever. With this, bitcoin reached an all-time high, sparking off a fresh debate of ‘a huge bubble’. The cryptocurrency, which started the year at USD 1,000, had reached USD 5,000 by October; its value of Bitcoin has jumped by a fifth in the last three days alone. 4. The market value of the bitcoin has soared from less than $1,000 at the start of the year. The virtual currency has reported more than 1300 per cent rise this year.

In the last week, bitcoin prices had touched $ 11,000 to hit a record high. Before that, the cryptocurrency had hit $10,000 for the first time in history. The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) on Tuesday cautioned users, holders and traders of Virtual Currencies (VCs) including Bitcoins regarding the potential economic, financial, operational, legal, customer protection and security related risks associated in dealing with such VCs. The RBI called on those trading in Bitcoins and other virtual currencies regarding the risks involved in the same.

The Centre has been debating over issues concerning bitcoins and had last month sought public opinion on allowing virtual currencies. Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley held an inter-ministerial meeting to examine risks related to virtual currencies (VCs) like bitcoins in June this year. The Central Bank also clarified that it has not given any licence or authorisation to any entity or company to operate schemes or deal with Bitcoin or any other VC.