Bitcoin currency hits new record

Popular crypto-currency Bitcoin hit a record high of $9,700 after jumping 4.5% so far on Monday.
The move takes it to 20% above the level it stood at on Friday, according to the Luxembourg-based Bitcoin exchange, Bitstamp.

It started the year at around $1,000.
Virtual currencies are largely unregulated and bypass traditional banking systems. Their growth is of increasing concern to international regulators.
China and South Korea have banned any new virtual currency launches and have been shutting down exchanges on which they are traded.
JP Morgan Chase's chief executive, Jamie Dimon, described Bitcoin at a recent conference as "a fraud".
"It's just not a real thing, eventually it will be closed," he said.
Currencies such as Bitcoin use blockchain, which is an online ledger of transactions maintained by a network of anonymous computers on the internet.
They are not backed by any government, nor central bank and therefore there is no-one responsible for backing their value.
European Central Bank policymaker Ewald Nowotny told Reuters news agency that Bitcoin "could easily blow up, and central banks could then be accused of not doing anything.
"So we're trying to understand whether bank activity in relation to crypto-currency trading needs to be better regulated."
BBC’s Rory Cellan-Jones drops a word concerning this:

This has felt like the latest, maddest speculative bubble, a tulip fever for the hi-tech era.
On its helter skelter ride towards $10,000, there have been plenty of occasions where Bitcoin has seemed in trouble - splits in the community over how it should be governed, robberies at exchanges, warnings from regulators.
But every time that pundits have warned the bubble is about to burst, the currency has stuttered for a few days and then gone charging higher.