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Bitcoin is having its best day since March following cooler April inflation reading

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Bitcoin jumped with stocks on Wednesday after the April consumer price index showed inflation eased from the previous month.

The price of the cryptocurrency was last higher by more than 5% at $64,910.57, according to Coin Metrics, and on pace for its best day since March 25. At one point, bitcoin traded above its 50-day moving average for the first time since April 13, though it has fallen below that level again.

“The slightly lighter than expected CPI number modestly increased the chance of a rate cut, which is still a strong influencer to bitcoin price,” Owen Lau, an analyst at Oppenheimer, told CNBC. “After the ETFs and halving, the next major catalyst is a rate cut. Bitcoin is likely to remain rangebound and trade along with macro data points, until we see a clearer path for rate cut.”

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Bitcoin jumps on report of easing U.S. inflation

The consumer price index, a broad measure of how much goods and services cost at the cash register, increased 0.3% from March, the Labor Department’s Bureau of Labor Statistics reported Wednesday. That was slightly below the Dow Jones estimate for 0.4%. Consumer prices are still rising 3.4% from a year ago.

“With the U.S. core CPI cooling down for the first time in six months, we could be seeing a recovery of investors’ appetite for risk-on assets like crypto, instigating more flows into bitcoin spot ETFs, which have been especially quiet over the past week,” said Leena ElDeeb, an analyst at 21Shares.

“Although with the rate cuts still in question, recovery might be slow,” she added. “Typically, higher interest rates make risk-on assets like tech stocks and bitcoin less appealing, as investors can secure substantial yields from safer options such as U.S. Treasurys.”

Bitcoin holds a unique position as both a risk-on and a risk-off asset and many investors hold a long-term view of the crypto asset, ElDeeb explained, adding that while Fed policies may induce bitcoin volatility in the short term, it doesn’t fundamentally change bitcoin’s long-term trajectory.

Lately, bitcoin has been more heavily influenced by macro factors, with industry catalysts like the launch of bitcoin ETFs and the halving in the rearview mirror. Earlier this week, bitcoin also sat out a two-day revival of the meme stock craze.

With Wednesday’s gain, bitcoin is now up 7% for the week – its best week since March 29 – and on pace to break a six-week slide.

Bitcoin has been holding between $60,000 and $70,000 – minus a couple blips above and below that range – since March, when it ran up to new all-time highs and quickly pulled back. Investors and analysts have been expecting the cryptocurrency to remain rangebound for several months longer, absent strong catalysts.

—CNBC’s Jeff Cox and Nick Wells contributed reporting.

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