Bitcoin crisis: Nearly $50 billion wiped off cryptocurrency in WORST month

Thursday, February 1, 2018
By Paul Martin

BITCOIN experienced a loss of nearly $50billion from its market capitalisation during January this year in one of its worst-performing months.

By DARIUS MCQUAID
Express.co.uk
Thu, Feb 1, 2018

Last year the price of bitcoin rose more than 1,000 percent but a crash in the cryptocurrency wiped off nearly $50 billion from bitcoin’s market cap in January alone.

According to CoinMarketCap bitcoin is now priced at $9,114 and the top ten cryptocurrencies are all falling in value.

Bitcoin dropped 11 percent today to its lowest price since November as a Facebook ban on cryptocurrency adverts and an increasing crackdown frightened investors.

Thursday’s drop to as low as $9,022 on the Luxembourg-based Bitstamp exchange left bitcoin trading at less than half the peak price of almost $20,000 it reached in December.

Last month, bitcoin slid more than 26 percent, in its worst monthly performance since January 2015.

More volatility is expected over the coming days over accusations levelled at popular exchange Bitfinex over the alleged propping up of tokens to artificially boost prices.

A month ago Bitfinex was subpoenaed by US regulatory agency – the Commodity Futures Trading Commission but news did not reach investors until Tuesday.

The subpoena means investigators are not allowed to publicly discuss an ongoing investigation as this could lead to a sell-off of all virtual currencies.

It comes amid a crackdown on cryptocurrencies and fears of increasing regulation.

Indian finance minster Arun Jaitley used his budget speech today to slam cryptocurrencies as he pledged his right-wing BJP government will do everything to discontinue the use of bitcoin and other virtual currencies in the country.

He said: “The government does not recognise cryptocurrency as legal tender or coin and will take all measures to eliminate the use of these cryptoassets in financing illegitimate activities or as part of the payments system”.

It comes as bitcoin miners are leaving China as the government attempts crack down on the process due to high electricity use will be heading to Canada and India.

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