Bitcoin dropped below $10,000 today, and it’s now worth just over half of its peak value. The cryptocurrency opened at $11,348, according to CoinDesk, and dropped over $1,600 to hit a low of $9,685, though it’s since recovered slightly and is currently trading at $9,702. Other cryptocurrencies like Ethereum, Ripple, Bitcoin Cash, Cardano, and Litecoin have also posted deep losses of between 30 to 40 percent, according to data from CoinMarketCap.
Bitcoin had a stellar year in 2017, starting at around $800 and steadily gaining value, before touching an all-time high of $19,783 on December 17th. The cryptocurrency’s price was buoyed as more and more investors poured money into the hype, with some even reportedly taking out mortgages for funds to invest. While there’s no immediate reason for today’s dip, bitcoin has been falling over the past week. Investor sentiment may have also been hit after Bitconnect, a platform for virtual currencies, announced it’s shutting down its exchange platform because of bad press, two cease and desist letters, and DDoS attacks. Bitconnect has also been accused of being a Ponzi scheme.
Bitcoin is notoriously volatile. There have been crackdowns on cryptocurrencies in several countries; South Korea recently proposed tighter rules while hinting at an outright ban. Warren Buffet told CNBC (perhaps presciently) earlier in January, “In terms of cryptocurrencies, generally, I can say with almost certainty that they will come to a bad ending.”