Bitcoin's previous all time high (ATH) price was hit back on the 18th December 2017 where it fell short of $20,000. The exact price of that ATH is not known as different exchanges had slightly different prices. However, at the current levels, the consensus (pun intended) is that we have now set a new ATH after almost three years. This 'crypto winter' has been long and hard for many in the industry with many good projects, investments funds and teams of developers struggling to get funding to support their work.
The risk now is, of course, that history repeats itself and that we enter into another cycle of painful price depreciation, but there are several factors that are signalling that this ATH is distinct from the 2017 ATH.
Whilst the 2017 ATH was reached on the back of little adoption and a massive craze in crypto generally (particularly at the height of the ICO craze), this ATH seems to be driven by institutional money (plus some billionaires who have publicly said this) where we see the same amount of transactions on the network but for larger amounts. In addition, the Bitcoin searches in Google have also not shown the upward trend which was seen in late 2017 indicating that a renewed craze or hype with bitcoin is not behind this latest surge in price.
"Congrats to those who have survived a full market cycle. Better buckle up!" - Jameson Lopp