Bitcoin futures rose to a new high Wednesday, rising to $16,500 per bitcoin.
The price of one bitcoin has risen more than 500% in the past 12 months.
The new highs mark a record for futures trading and represent an extraordinary increase for the digital currency.
The CBOE Volatility Index (VIX) has gained more than 17% over the past two years, rising from around 3% to almost 25% in just a few months.
Bitcoin futures traded at $16.88 on the New York Mercantile Exchange Wednesday, up from $16 on Nov. 30.
It has also traded higher on other major exchanges, including BATS and CBOE.
Bitcoin’s rally coincides with the Federal Reserve’s decision to lift interest rates from a record low of zero to 0.25%, with the central bank expected to raise interest rates to near-zero in June.
The Fed is expected to announce an increase in the $2,000 per bitcoin ceiling later in the year.
Bitcoin has surged more than 2,000% in value since last year.
The virtual currency’s rise has come at a time when the global economy is facing a global economic downturn.
Bitcoin prices have soared in recent weeks as investors have priced in the U.S. presidential election, the release of a new government report on economic growth and global economic developments.
A number of high-profile Bitcoin investors have also been holding their cash in anticipation of a possible Trump presidency.
In fact, more than $10 million in bitcoin is currently in a holding account in a Swiss bank.
In addition, bitcoin futures traded higher Wednesday on futures platform CBOE Futures Europe, which has about 2,600 dealers.
This week, CBOE is scheduled to release a new market update on the state of the global financial system, and this week it will also announce an upgrade to its platform for bitcoin futures.
The news comes just as bitcoin futures are expected to gain steam, especially after the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) plans to regulate the digital asset.
Earlier this month, the FTC said it was reviewing the technology behind bitcoin, and the agency’s proposed rules would allow the cryptocurrency to be used in “electronic funds transfer services.”
In addition to the election, a report published Tuesday by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. found that bitcoin’s volatility has soared in the last year, particularly during the election season.
The report noted that while bitcoin has increased in value over the last few years, volatility has risen at an unprecedented pace.
The bitcoin market is currently experiencing its second-largest increase in value in 2017.
As of Tuesday, bitcoin had traded at more than 6,000 times its previous high in mid-November, with $11.3 billion in value.
This year, bitcoin is forecast to trade between $11,000 and $12,000, with the most likely price to occur sometime in 2018.