The global cryptocurrency market lost more than one hundred billion dollars due to regulatory issues and concerns of bitcoin price manipulation on a major exchange.
On Friday, February 2, by 6:30 am (London time) the total value of cryptocurrencies was $405,241,490,138, per coinmarketcap.com, the site that tracks the prices of digital coins through key exchanges. This amount reflected a decrease of $112.6 billion from the previous day.
Of late, these digital currencies have experienced big sell-offs. The bitcoin price index of CoinDesk, which function as a tracker for the prices from four big cryptocurrency exchanges, showed that the price of Bitcoin decreased to less than $9,000 on February 1, while the prices of other cryptocurrencies fell as well. By 6:30 am London time on February 2, the price of ripple was down by 32 percent and ethereum, by 22 percent.
Negative news has recently hounded the cryptocurrency world. Arun Jaitley, the Finance Minister of India, has implied that stricter regulation laws were about to be implemented in the country, when he indicated that India wishes to remove the use of these currencies for criminal activities.
In the New York Times, a story last Wednesday showed that more and more cryptocurrency investors are concerned over the inflated prices of digital currencies such as bitcoin due to digital currency exchange Bitfinex, which is part of CoinDesk’s price index.
A Bloomberg report on January 30 showed that last December, Bitfinex and Tether, another digital currency, had been subpoenaed by he U.S. Commodity Futures and Trading Commission. Bitfinex and Tether were found to be managed by the some of the same individuals. Neither company has commented on the report.
Additionally, hackers were able to steal $500 million worth of NEM, another digital currency, thus compromising Coincheck, a Japanese currency exchange.
Influential leaders such as Warren Buffet have also made negative remarks concerning digital currencies. In an interview, Mr. Buffet said that he believes that things will not end well for the sector.
However, there are others who see a bright future for the world of cryptocurrency, such as Fundstrat’s Tom Lee. He said that bitcoin’s low price a few weeks ago of $9,00 is “the biggest buying opportunity in 2018.” Mr, Lee is the lone strategist from Wall Street who has made formal price targets on bitcoin.
Saxo Bank Analyst Kay Van-Petersen says that the price of bitcoin could go up to $50,000 and $100,000 this year. At the beginning of last year, Ms. Petersen had been able to predict cryptocurrency’s rally.