NEW YORK--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Several recent events point to greater corporate acceptance of the virtual currency Bitcoin as a payment mechanism, according to Fitch Ratings.
DISH Network on May 29 said it would accept Bitcoin as a form of customer payment beginning in the third quarter of this year. Expedia said in June that it would begin accepting Bitcoin as payment for hotel reservations, while online retailer Newegg just announced that it would accept Bitcoin as well.
In mid-June, Apple made virtual currency app Coin Pocket available for download in its App Store. Coin Pocket is a Bitcoin wallet app that can be used to send and receive bitcoins. As was widely reported, Apple recently added a rule to its App Store guidelines stating "apps may facilitate transmission of approved virtual currencies provided that they do so in compliance with all state and federal laws for the territories in which the app functions."
Companies like DISH, Expedia, and Newegg generate meaningful revenue and an increase in payment for products and services via Bitcoin could boost the payment system. However, as we've stated previously, Bitcoin is still small relative to both major payment processors and global currencies despite increases in its acceptance as a payment system.
Bitcoin's price and transaction volume have climbed since mid-May, reversing downward trends earlier in the year. The price of Bitcoin rose from $489 on May 21 to $639 on June 30. As a result of this price increase, the average daily transaction volume rose from $47 million per day in May to $61 million per day in June, despite a decline in the average number of daily transactions.
For additional information on this topic, please see our report titled, "Sizing Up Bitcoin - Volume Rises with Price in June," available at www.thewhyforum.com.
Additional information is available on www.fitchratings.com.
The above article originally appeared as a post on the Fitch Wire credit market commentary page. The original article, which may include hyperlinks to companies and current ratings, can be accessed at www.fitchratings.com. All opinions expressed are those of Fitch Ratings.