Early this morning, Elon Musk, the CEO of SpaceX and Tesla, as well as the richest person in the world, changed his Twitter profile to read “#bitcoin” and tweeted a cryptic message that many in the Bitcoin space interpreted as advocacy for the technology or acknowledgment that his tacit endorsement was bound to happen.
In retrospect, it was inevitable— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) January 29, 2021
Within minutes of the tweet’s appearance, the price of bitcoin rose sharply. It rose from roughly $ 32,000 at the time of the tweet to roughly $ 37,500 just an hour later, a 14 percent increase, according to TradingView. The price of BTC finally hit a 14-day high of $ 38,300 on the day. This price gain triggered more than $ 446 million in short liquidations on various cryptocurrency exchanges, according to data aggregator Coinalyze.
To commemorate the moment, bitcoin mining pool F2Pool incorporated Musk’s message in block 668,197.
While it is not possible to draw a direct line between Musk’s tweet and the bitcoin price surge, it is clear that it generated a lot of interest. According to Google Trends, searches for the word “bitcoin” more than doubled in the two hours after the post.
Some have also speculated that the price was moved by Musk himself making a significant investment in bitcoin. Last month, Musk publicly asked Michael Saylor, the CEO of MicroStrategy that he has diverted millions of dollars in treasury assets into bitcoin, about the feasibility of conducting large bitcoin transactions.