By Olivia Raimonde

Ether, the world’s second-largest cryptocurrency rose to $2,000 for the first time, as the rally in digital assets continues to broaden beyond Bitcoin.

The digital token for the Ethereum network gained as much as 2.3% to $2,014 on Friday. It has surged about 170% this year. The Bloomberg Galaxy Crypto Index gained gained about 3%, while Bitcoin was little changed after more than doubling this year.

814x-1 (20)Bloomberg

“We’re now really breaking higher and that will very likely attract buying activity,” said Julius de Kempenaer, senior analyst at StockCharts.com. “Ether is gaining in relative strength versus Bitcoin.”

The token has mirrored the gains in Bitcoin over the past year amid a flood of stimulus aimed at boosting the global economy during the Covid-19 pandemic. Critics warn that crypto is a speculative bubble that will likely burst.

Ether has a market value of about $230 billion, compared with about $1.1 trillion for Bitcoin, according to data from CoinMarketCap.com.

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