Dogecoin value soars after Elon Musk says it will be accepted for Tesla goods

School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings School closings

Dogecoin, the cryptocurrency with a shiba inu dog meme, soared in value by 15% on Friday after the billionaire Elon Musk said it could be used to buy Tesla merchandise.

Dogecoin rose to $0.20 after Musk’s tweet early on Friday, and has soared by 5,859% over the past 12 months, according to data from the Coinbase website.

Payments in dogecoin went live on Tesla’s website soon after, with items such as an electric quad bike for kids priced at 12,020 doge ($2,368; £1,735) for those with more modest budgets a “Giga Texas Belt Buckle,” for 835 doge ($156) or a whistle for 300 doge ($57).

Musk, who frequently writes about cryptocurrencies on Twitter and has previously described dogecoin as “the people’s crypto”, had said in December that Tesla would soon test accepting dogecoin as payment for some merchandise.

However, he had called dogecoin a “hustle” during his guest-host spot on Saturday Night Live in May 2021. On the show, Musk appeared as “the Dogefather” and when asked to explain “what is dogecoin?”, he replied: “Yeah, it’s a hustle.”

Chris Kline, a co-founder of the investment firm Bitcoin IRA, said: “Elon Musk has been an advocate for the crypto community for many years. His latest announcement will usher in a new era of commerce and trailblaze a path for altcoins to expand their use case.”

Musk, the world’s richest person with an estimated $264bn fortune, was named Time magazine’s person of the year for 2021 despite criticism for his attitude to tax, opposition to unions, and playing down the dangers of Covid-19.

Describing him as a “clown, genius, edgelord, visionary, industrialist, showman”, Time cited the breadth of Musk’s endeavours, from his founding of SpaceX in 2002, to his hand in the creation of the alternative energy company SolarCity in addition to Tesla, by far the most valuable car company in the world.