Bitcoin, Ethereum push higher, struggle to make headway

Prices of Bitcoin and Ethereum were higher on Thursday, but struggled to make headway amid persistent concerns that cryptocurrencies are facing a period of correction after recent record rallies.

Bitcoin rose $38.6 or 1.65% on the U.S.-based GDAX exchange operated by Coinbase to $2,376.0 by 05.17 AM ET.

Bitcoin has struggled to regain momentum since hitting a peak of $3,000 in June.

Analysts at Morgan Stanley on Wednesday warned that rather than buying Bitcoin, owners need to be spending it.

“Bitcoin owners are reluctant to use the cryptocurrency given its rate of appreciation,” the team of analysts led by James Faucette wrote in a report.

“Bitcoin acceptance is virtually zero and shrinking,” the team warned.

“The ecosystem has focused more on value speculation rather than the foot leather-eating work of increasing acceptance,” the team wrote, adding that this focus has made it “way easier to trade speculatively than convince new merchants to accept the cryptocurrency.”

The report comes at a time when many analysts are warning of a bubble in cryptocurrencies which have hit all-time highs this year.

Meanwhile, Ethereum ticked up to $209.3, up $4.32 or 2.16% for the day.

Ethereum notched its third weekly loss in a row last week and prices are down almost 55% since peaking at an all-time high close to the $400-level in mid-June.

Other cryptocurrencies such as Litecoin and Ripple were mixed.

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