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Bitcoin keeps sliding a day after wild trading

MI
  • Bitcoin, the red-hot digital coin, was trading down 3.8% Thursday morning.
  • The coin has been under pressure as anxiety mounts over a number of outages at leading crypto-exchanges.

Bitcoin is under pressure a day after a wild trading session for the scorching-hot digital currency.

Bitcoin, which pushed past $US11,000 on Wednesday, was trading down 3.8% Thursday morning at $US9,465 a coin, according to Markets Insider data. On Wednesday, the coin shed more than $US1,000 in a couple of hours as anxiety mounted over a number of outages at leading cryptocurrency exchanges.

Users of Coinbase’s professional trading platform, and Bitstamp, a bitcoin exchange based in Luxembourg, reported slow performance and outages. Such platforms have struggled to keep up with the explosive rise of bitcoin and increased trading volumes for cryptocurrencies.

24-hour volumes, according to crypto data site CoinMarketCap, hit all-time highs in November. At the time of publication, they were just under $US20 billion. To put that in context, the New York Stock Exchange sees approximately $US50 billion of shares exchange on its floor during any given trading day.

The problem is platforms like Coinbase don’t have the infrastructure to handle volumes that high, according to Garrett See, the CEO of DV Chain, the crypto trading division of Chicago-trading firm DV Trading.

See told Business Insider his firm is focusing on how it can improve the interface between his trading desks and cryptocurrency exchanges.

“We have been adapting the software we use on the traditional side and applying them to cryptocurrency markets,” See said.

Coinbase blamed high volumes for problems with their site in a tweet out early Thursday morning.

Screen Shot 2017 11 30 at 9.54.45 AMMI

Exchanges appear to be stepping up their game, however. San Francisco-based Kraken, for instance, has been actively hiring developers to improve their infrastructure.

“Development team growth has been part of our strategy all along,” CEO Jesse Powell wrote in a statement to Business Insider. “The increased volume has validated our hunch. The key to hiring though is to ensure we are preserving Kraken’s extremely high standards.”

Still, traders are incredulous about whether efforts on the part of exchanges will translate into anything meaningful.

“They have said this for years,” said Josh Olszewicz, a trader and writer for Brave New Coin.”It’s been s— for a while.”

Screen Shot 2017 11 30 at 9.29.00 AMMICryptocurrency market cap and 24-hour volumes.

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