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Bitcoin nears $10,000 as splits fuel speculation

Digital currency has birthed a trio of variants since August

Bitcoin is the best-known of the world's growing number of cryptocurrencies.

TOKYO -- The price of bitcoin is approaching $10,000 following another split in the cryptocurrency, with each one seeming to inflate what some call the latest asset bubble.

Bitcoin topped $9,700 at one point on Monday and has gained $1,700, or a fifth, over the past week, according to blockchain technology data provider CoinDesk. Its value has grown 10-fold this year. Bitcoin crossed the 1 million milestone in yen terms Sunday.

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