Ethereum sinks to its lowest level of 2018

  • ETH is down 10% over the last 24 hours at its lowest levels of 2018.
  • All cryptocurrencies have seen steep losses this week.

Ethereum might have been the best-performing cryptocurrency in January, but it has not been immune to this week’s massive sell-off.

The second-largest cryptocurrency by market cap lost as much as 36% of its value in the last 24 hours, sinking as low as $US735 per token early Friday morning before recouping a chunk of those losses. It’s currently down 7.69% at $US945.

All major cryptocurrencies saw dramatic losses this week. The market value of all digital tokens in circulation lost about $US100 billion in market capitalisation in the last 24 hours, as this chart from shows:

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Market capitalisation is an inexact measure of cryptocurrencies, as Business Insider has previously reported, but it at least gives a good idea of the scale of the current sell-off.

“The wheels are coming off the bitcoin bandwagon,” Neil Wilson, a senior market analyst with ETX Capital, said in an email to Business Insider. “The regulatory crunch appears closer than ever and sooner or later this market could be headed back down to earth. Selling pressure at the moment is intense as there has been nothing but bad news for bitcoin bulls of late.”

This week began with news that major exchange Bitfinex and associated cryptocurrency company Tether had been hit with subpoenas from the US Commodities Futures Trading Commission back in December, and made worse when India’s finance minister spoke out against cryptocurrencies’ use.

The Indian government “does not consider cryptocurrencies legal tender or coin and will take all measures to eliminate use of these crypto-assets in financing illegitimate activities or as part of the payment system,” he told lawmakers in the country.

Will Martin and Oscar Williams-Grut assisted with reporting from London.

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