Bitcoin prices rallied in the early London session after Reuters reported that PayPal would launch its crypto checkout services later on Tuesday.
The payment giant, which started offering bitcoin custodial and trading services in October last year, will now allow US customers to use their cryptocurrency holdings to pay to PayPal’s millions of merchants worldwide. The service also extends to users who hold Ethereum, Bitcoin Cash, and Litecoin.
“This is the first time you can seamlessly use cryptocurrencies in the same way as a credit card or a debit card inside your PayPal wallet,” Dan Schulman, president/CEO of PayPal told Reuters ahead of the formal announcement.
The offering made PayPal one of the largest mainstream financial giants foraying into the digital currency sector. Many analysts noted that it would lead to a crypto price boom, with the first signs already emerging across the bitcoin and altcoin market.
Bitcoin surged more than 2.5 percent to $59,300 shortly after the PayPal news entered the wire. Meanwhile, Ethereum, the second-largest cryptocurrency, climbed more than 1.25 percent to $1,844. Litecoin and Bitcoin Cash surged 1.97 percent and 2.36 percent, respectively.
The bitcoin price was already inching higher amid a renewed appetite for safe-havens on Wall Street.
Investors watched for a major fallout from Archegos Capital Management’s unwinding of more than $30 billion of stocks in recent sessions. The family-run fund’s losses prompted banks that brokered its trades to liquidate positions, with Credit Suisse and Nomura Holdings admitting that they risked facing losses.
Bitcoin inched higher on the news, although no evidence could correlate the two events. Meanwhile, investors’ anticipation of a potential stock market turmoil raised their appetite for the US dollar, their safest bet against economic uncertainty.
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With PayPal at its backer now, Bitcoin now hopes to extend its price rally beyond the psychological resistance level of $60,000.
“Next key levels are $72,000-100,000 on Bitcoin,” said Zhu Su, the CEO/CIO at Three Arrow Capital.