Here’s how bitcoin is dwarfing housing and dot-com bubbles

Who will blame the investor who’s ready to slam the door on August?

As the month draws to an end, North Korea and the Texas floods have been the rattle in an empty can. Though investors have shown a tiny bit of resilience this week, if you can call a 0.1% gain a stiff-upper-lip reaction. No, bring on September and the promise of more volume and traders streaming back in from their Hampton vakes.

But as we roll into the cruelest month for stocks, it’s a good idea not to drop your guard. That’s because North Korea, Harvey’s fallout or the deadline for raising the U.S. debt ceiling can still come back to haunt this market, warns IronFX Global’s Charalambos Pissouros.

Some investors did use Pyongyang’s missile launch as a chance to drop into the hot asset du jour/an — bitcoin BTCUSD, -0.91% , that is. And that brings us to our chart of the day from Bespoke Premium. It lays out how the cryptocurrency’s rise stacks up against that of assets that eventually bubbled.

The chart shows how technology and home builder stocks traded in the days leading up to their bubbles. And in that light, if bitcoin was going to pop, the runup has been far more dramatic.

“The point was we don’t know if it’s a bubble or not, but we know how past bubbles look. And this is a comparison of bitcoin versus past bubbles,” said Justin Walters, co-founder of Bespoke, in an emailed comment.

The cryptocurrency has now surged past $4,000. It’s up a good 60% so far this month and up 360% so far this year.

On Twitter, the chart elicited a range of responses. “One problem here is hindsight bias. Comparing bitcoin to known bubbles assumes bitcoin is a bubble itself,” @InvestingonSale argues.

Key market gauges

Dow ESU7, -0.11% , Nasdaq NQU7, -0.07% and S&P YMU7, -0.06% futures have slipped some post-data. Gold GCU7, -0.53% is also turning south, at $1,313 an ounce. Asian markets ADOW, +0.54% were mainly on the rebound, and European stocks SXXP, +0.63% were bouncing up from 6-month lows.

While skies may be clearing over Houston, crude prices US:CLU7 are looking weak again as major refineries in Texas remain offline and a U.S. supply data update looms. Gas futures RBU7, +6.06% are up nearly 3%.

The buzz

United Technologies UTX, +2.92% is closing in on a $20 billion deal for Rockwell Collins COL, +2.15% , The Wall Street Journal reported, citing sources who say the agreement could come as soon as this weekend.

Jack Daniel’s parent Brown-Forman BF.B, +2.32% BF.A, +1.86% is on the earnings docket ahead of the open.

Under Armour UAA, -2.95% shares could see more pressure after some trash-talking from NBA star Kevin Durant.

It’s official: Khosrowshahi is Uber’s new CEO.

Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway BRK.A, +0.02% BRK.B, -0.04% officially became the biggest shareholder of Bank of America BAC, +0.47% Tuesday, notching billions in gains on the bank’s recovery from the financial crisis.

The call

Brace for it. Higher airfare prices may be just one of many unfortunate (at least for passengers) side effects from Harvey.

GasBuddy senior petroleum analyst Patrick DeHaan, was quoted a couple days ago as saying consumers could see a big jump in flight prices, thanks to the storm.

This Bloomberg chart from The Daily Shot shows how jet fuel prices have been surging in the wake of the disaster.

That may boost airline stocks down the road. But carriers been taking a beating as of late, as some airports in Texas remain hampered by flooding.

The quote

“Our whole city is underwater right now but we are coming! If you called, we are coming. Please get to higher ground if you can, but please try stay out of attics.” — That was Port Arthur, TX Mayor Derrick Freeman on his Facebook page in the wee hours.

No doubt, there is real panic setting in across that city.

The economy

The rebound for the U.S. economy was stronger than initially reported in the second quarter, with GDP up 3% from April to June, with consumer spending the main growth engine.

Meanwhile, the ADP employment report for August — the precursor to Friday’s jobs report — showed surging jobs growth in August.

Look for POTUS to talk taxes in a speech in Missouri on Wednesday. Officials quoted by The Wall Street Journal say he will argue that business-tax cuts will help out middle-class workers.