Bitcoin Explodes Above $14,000 - Korean PM Fears "Serious Pathological Phenomena"

Tyler Durden's picture

Well that escalated quickly...

Just a few hours ago, Bitcoin surged above $13,000 and now, on notable volume, it has reached the stunning $14,000 level... up 20% today...

The real surge began at 1715ET...

For those keeping track, this is how long it has taken the cryptocurrency to cross the key psychological levels:

  • $0000 - $1000: 1789 days
  • $1000- $2000: 1271 days
  • $2000- $3000: 23 days
  • $3000- $4000: 62 days
  • $4000- $5000: 61 days
  • $5000- $6000: 8 days
  • $6000- $7000: 13 days
  • $7000- $8000: 14 days
  • $8000- $9000: 9 days
  • $9000-$10000: 2 days
  • $10000-$11000: 1 day
  • $11000-$12000: 6 days
  • $12,000-$13,000: 17 hours
  • $13,000-$14,000: 4 hours

As Bitcoin has soared, it appears traders have sold other cyrptocurrencies to chase it as Ether has dropped in sync..

One of the regions in the world with the most active Bitcoin community is South Korea where so many Koreans have embraced bitcoin that the prime minister recently warned that cryptocurrencies might corrupt the nation’s youth.

As Bloomberg reports, while neighboring Japan hosts more transactions by some measures, Korea punches far above its weight: In the 24-hour period through Wednesday evening in Seoul, about 21 percent of the world’s bitcoin trades on fee-charging venues involved the Korean won, according to The country accounts for about 1.9 percent of the world economy.

As Korean policy makers grow increasingly worried that the mania has gone too far, the nation could become a focus for bitcoin traders around the world. Korea’s top financial watchdog, which briefly roiled cryptocurrency markets with its ban on initial coin offerings in September, said this week that it has “grave concerns” about overheated speculation and has formed a task force with other government bodies to increase supervision.

While it’s unclear what measures will emerge from Korea’s cryptocurrency task force, the government seems intent on acting. The tax authority is considering a levy on cryptocurrency trading gains, Yonhap News reported on Tuesday, while Prime Minister Lee Nak-yon warned last month that cryptocurrencies could become gateways to pyramid schemes and other illicit activity if left unchecked.

“If we let things continue, I feel some serious pathological phenomena could occur,” Lee said.

Bitcoin’s stateless status appeals to some Koreans who’ve grown wary of keeping their savings in a country that shares a border with Kim Jong Un’s increasingly belligerent regime in North Korea, according to Kwak Keumjoo, professor of psychology at Seoul National University.

“People want to take comfort in something outside and beyond the country,” Kwak said.

Finally, we note that growth continues as Coinbase CEO today noted they currently have 220 customer service reps and will add 400 next year:

"it's very difficult to keep up with the user influx."

As CoinTelegraph reports, since ChinaRussia, and a few others cracked down hard on Bitcoin, it has been relatively quiet on the regulations front as Bitcoin has continued to soar unbridled. However, the head scratching on how to regulate continues.

The next fear, for Former Fortress Hedge Fund Manager Michael Novogratz, is that Bitcoin’s continued rise and prominence in the mainstream media could reawaken the regulation beast.

However, Novogratz still feels that Bitcoin is difficult to regulate and it will be hard for governments to make an impact immediately. Novogratz, who has been outspoken on Bitcoin for some time now, claiming it could be a bubble, but one to profit from has his concerns now.

"I've got concerns that if price movements go higher, we're going to get more regulation," Novogratz said.


“But I think it's hard to shut down. ... I don't think that's a probability."


"One of the big risks out there right now is that prices are moving so fast that regulators are going to get nervous," he added.


"I could legitimately see Bitcoin go $13,000, $14,000, $20,000, $25,000 and see somebody balk."

Novogratz adds:

"We're in a speculative frenzy. Period. Stop. How long can it go? Who knows," Novogratz said. "What's interesting about this is it's global."

Another reason that Bitcoin has hit such heights must also be attributed to it finding its identity. Many were scratching their heads as to what Bitcoin is - a currency or an asset - but recent changes have set it straight.

"Bitcoin is winning out as digital gold," Novogratz explained.


"I don't think it's going to be a currency... Nothing that volatile is going to be a currency."

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quesnay's picture

But if you're all there ... whose buying the bitcoin you sold to get a Lambo? ;-)

great_scot's picture

The people who want to buy 2 Lambos next week?

Bunga Bunga's picture

Wall St. They can't resist, since their greed ate their brain.

HRClinton's picture

At $20k, that BTC-to-AU pump will be more pumped than Hans & Franz at maximum pumptitude.

Dr. Engali's picture

I got an email from Apmex today. You can now pay for physical gold and silver with bitcoin. Fucking crazy.

Schmuck Raker's picture

Really? Sweet

Direct gold>BTC>gold is what I've been wishing for! Thanks Doc!

dark pools of soros's picture

dude AmagiMetals been doing it for years.. you guys all pissed and moaned and sat on your shiny

Dr. Engali's picture

No, I own shiny and crypto. Have for a very long time.

atomp's picture

It is unpossible to have owned crypto "for a very long time"

Dr. Engali's picture

I’ve owned it for four years. That’s a long time in its lifespan.

atomp's picture

It's all relative, innit?

HRClinton's picture

That's fantastic!

The only catch is, all these places are American, and therefore leave a nice paper trail for all the wrong people.

As a libertarian, I prefer the privacy of a face-to-face transaction in a safe environment. 

overbet's picture

dont do it they just want your btc. hold or add aggressively. 50k soon

ZH Snob's picture

I wouldn't trade my BTC for cash or gold...right now.   I got it to diversify from my PMs, and it's working great.  why mess with it?

Mustafa Kemal's picture

"I got an email from Apmex today. You can now pay for physical gold and silver with bitcoin."

True that. For awhile it was primarily JM Bullion and I bugged  apmex several times and they simply responded, no they dont. But, I guess now they do.

BTC > Au coming soon.

HRClinton's picture

Told ya. I rest my case.

Number 9's picture

this is getting ridiculous

Spungo's picture

This is getting interesting. Some guys are going to get insanely rich from Bitcoin. Others are going to lose everything. Same as it always was.

Nature_Boy_Wooooo's picture

That's a little extreme......I doubt gold will plummet to nothing.

HRClinton's picture

Depends. If Bitcoin is the emergence of a new monetary system, then it is not a bubble. 

It's a new ecosystem. Like the emergence of  paper money and the end of tally sticks.

And then you can scratch your last sentence.

Spungo's picture

I doubt it will be adopted. Steam has just dropped Bitcoin because the transaction fees were too high. It's more expensive to process bitcoin than it is to process Visa or Mastercard.

silverserfer's picture

sombodys sinister secret plan is going perfectly according to plan. bwahaha.

Anteater's picture

I always turn the yield curve upside down. Always.

If you are buying BTC, you are going over Niagara.

You're gonna need Viagra after your nuts are clipped.


"Thank you for calling Satoshi Capital Holdings.

Currency redemptions are limited to $500 per day.

All our brokers are busy panic-selling at this time.

Please leave your name, phone and your urgent sell

order details, and we'll contact you in ... 5.4 days."


What is it like to walk on the wrong side of a trade?

To step out of line, to cross the line, to walk that

tightrope of what it is, to be in euphoria and woe?


maxblockm's picture

No limits on BTC transactions.

Banks on the other hand have a record of limiting cash withdrawals, especially at ATMs, and especially during crises.

Jack Oliver's picture

Seems only US ‘vassals’ are pushing the price up - China and Russia prefer GOLD !!

At least BTC is supply and demand - the problems will start when FUCKING nobody is prepared to put 14 thousand US DOLLARS into your bank account to pay for ONE Bitcoin - which - of course - could be FUCKING hacked !!

Hyjinx's picture

Have some salt with that wound.

Mustafa Kemal's picture

" which - of course - could be FUCKING hacked !!"

The  btc blockchain has yet to be hacked. 

katchum's picture

SO WHAT? Leave the bitcoin people, let them buy as many bitcoin as they want. What's the problem?

slyhill's picture

Actually, it could be a kind of solution. One thought I heard was that crypto is acting like a giant sponge, soaking up all this zirp inspired liquidity, preventing this fiat from being spent on "real" property and igniting inflation.

Sounds good to me, however I doubt anyone has the ability to dream up and execute such a cruel and lengthy sting.

truthalwayswinsout's picture

Is there still space on

topspinslicer's picture

It really is like crack cocaine

Herodotus's picture

Extraordinary Popular Delusions and the Madness of Crowds

Dr. Dooms-a-lot's picture

Excellent read but... For 4.5 BTC I want a new M2!!!  

HRH of Aquitaine 2.0's picture

I have been out. Sitting on cash and waiting. These levels are insane. A hack and nothing happens to the price? People have lost their minds.