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Elon Musk: Bitcoin is on the verge of broad acceptance

Elon Musk, founder of SpaceX and chief executive officer of Tesla Inc., arrives at the Axel Springer Award ceremony in Berlin, Germany, on Tuesday, Dec. 1, 2020. Tesla Inc. will be added to the S&P 500 Index in one shot on Dec. 21, a move that will ripple through the entire market as money managers adjust their portfolios to make room for shares of the $538 billion company. Photographer: Liesa Johannssen-Koppitz/Bloomberg via Getty Images

(CNN) — Tesla CEO Elon Musk has declared his support for bitcoin, boosting the price of the cryptocurrency in the process.

In an interview Sunday on audio-only social app Clubhouse, Musk said he should have bought the digital currency eight years ago. The audio was no longer available on Monday, but many listeners posted the interview on other platforms, including YouTube.

“I do at this point think bitcoin is a good thing. I’m late to the party, but I am a supporter of bitcoin,” he said.

The price of a single bitcoin spiked a little more than $1,000 to about $34,500 on Monday before easing back again. Bitcoin is up more than 260% over the past 12 months and a number of high-profile money managers, including Paul Tudor Jones and Stanley Druckenmiller, have embraced the cryptocurrency.

Investors also have a growing number of ways to gain exposure to bitcoin in traditional capital markets, such as publicly traded companies and exchange-traded funds.

Musk has a history of tweeting support for assets and sending their value soaring. In recent weeks, he tweeted that he liked Etsy, sparking a 10% stock rally. He supported cryptocurrency Dogecoin, sending it 20% higher. And he added to the GameStop surge.

“I think [bitcoin] is on the verge of getting broad acceptance by conventional finance people,” Musk told Clubhouse’s Good Time, a show focused on technology and culture. He has previously expressed skepticism of bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies, so he caused a stir on Friday when he changed his Twitter bio to #bitcoin.

Musk said he didn’t have strong opinions on other cryptocurrencies and that his comments on Dogecoin are “meant to be jokes.” The virtual currency, which originally started as an internet parody based on a viral dog meme, surged last week thanks to hyped-up Reddit users before plunging over the weekend.

“The most ironic outcome would be that Dogecoin becomes the currency of Earth in the future,” said Musk.

—- Paul R. La Monica and Michelle Toh contributed reporting.