Image: iStock

Capital flight from Asia has been a major factor behind bitcoin’s ascent to new 2020 highs this month, according to analyst and TV presenter Max Keiser.

The raging bitcoin bull, who has been imploring his viewers to buy the top crypto since it could be picked up for $1, believes rising geopolitical tensions in the region have helped drive the price up to the $12,000 range. The catastrophic explosion at Beirut port on August 5 brought the impact of such tensions on markets into sharp focus.

In a tweet on August 10, the host of the Keiser Report argued that bitcoin is a considerably more effective way to transfer large amounts of value across international borders than gold, the traditional safe haven in times of crisis.

#Bitcoin up as tensions rise in Asia,” Keiser tweeted.

“Capital flight out of Asia taking the bitcoin express.”

“You can’t take it with you, unless it’s Bitcoin – then you can take IT ALL with you 

“(Something near impossible with Gold)”

Chinese smuggler

A Chinese student who was recently arrested by the US authorities after crossing illegally from Canada may be wishing she had taken Keiser’s advice and used bitcoin as a store of value instead. Officials seized $28,000 worth of gold bars they found on her person before sending her back to Canada, the New York Post reported.

Meanwhile, in Hong Kong, wealthy residents have been moving large quantities of gold out of the financial hub since Beijing imposed a new national security law in July, the Financial Times reported.

Joshua Rotbart, head of J Rotbart & Co, a Hong Kong gold dealer and storage provider, told the FT that since the draconian law was imposed, many residents have been looking to store the precious metal “somewhere else.”

Referring to growing concerns about property rights and the rule of law, Singapore-based precious metals analyst Ronan Manly told the FT, “Investors are moving gold from Hong Kong to Singapore because they don’t like risk and uncertainty.”

Read: Max Keiser says bitcoin will soar to $400K

Asia Times Financial is now live. Linking accurate news, insightful analysis and local knowledge with the ATF China Bond 50 Index, the world's first benchmark cross sector Chinese Bond Indices. Read ATF now.