Bitcoin goes big: Wall Street, Silicon Valley aboard

terminalbitcoin12 Dec 2013 / CNBC – Scoff if you like but bitcoin, despite its myriad defects and detractors, is getting an increasing level of focus in high finance.

Just a few recent examples:

Reports surfaced this week that JPMorgan Chase has been pursuing the development of a cryptocurrency for at least 14 years.

In a recent analysis for clients, Bank of America Merrill Lynch called bitcoin a potential “major means of payment for e-commerce and may emerge as a serious competitor to traditional money transfer providers.”

And Fidelity is now reportedly allowing clients to put bitcoins in their 401(k) plans, adding a little risk to the retirement picture, according to financial website MarketWatch.

(Read more: Cashless society: A huge threat to our freedom)

Bitcoin, the cryptocurrency created by online “miners” who solve complex math problems, is gaining as much acceptance as skepticism these days.

The digital currency alternative has been a favorite target of speculators, who pushed the price as high as $1,240 earlier in December and as low as $365 just a month ago. It traded around $850 midday Thursday, according to the Mt.Gox exchange…… Read more

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