Bitcoin pushed higher Monday as proponents took encouragement at its failure to breach the closely watched US$30 000 support level over the weekend.

The largest cryptocurrency advanced 6% to $34 595 as of 2.10pm in Hong Kong, in a second day of gains. The broad crypto space also gained, with the market cap of the ecosystem up about 8% to $1.43-trillion, according to CoinGecko pricing.

“We’re seeing the $30 000 level on bitcoin being defended quite well with a number of tests at that level over the past month,” said Vijay Ayyar, head of Asia-Pacific at crypto exchange Luno. “We saw a lot of downward pressure on prices being defended, so this looks quite bullish at this point.”

Bitcoin has halved in recent weeks amid concern on its environmental impact and as regulators globally — notably in China — crack down on the industry. The digital currency had reached a record near $65 000 in mid-April amid advocacy from the likes of Tesla’s Elon Musk before he too criticised its green credentials.

Meanwhile, in the UK, Binance Markets was banned by the financial watchdog from doing any regulated business in the country, one of the most significant moves to date by a regulator amid a global crackdown in the crypto industry.

For Luno’s Ayyar it is too soon to give the all-clear.

“One more push down to $30 000 might not hold given the number of times we’ve tested it and there’s only so much liquidity there,” he said. “Post-$30 000 and we should probably see $24 000 to $25 000.”  — Reported by Joanna Ossinger, (c) 2021 Bloomberg LP