The Bitcoin price (BTC/USD) has plunged below the $10,000 following a surprise sell-off that occurred on Wednesday afternoon.
The original cryptocurrency spent most of yesterday’s session trading sideways, with its price moving within a tight range. The digital coin enjoyed a brief period of positive price action in the afternoon, which allowed it to rise to an intraday high of $10,279.37. However, this was immediately followed by a sharp plunge that sent the BTC price deep below the $10,000 mark. The coin fell to as low as $9,716.66, before closing the session at $9,754.42.
Bitcoin has continued to decline, albeit much more gradually, during today’s morning session. Moving on a downward trajectory, the coin hit a one-month low of $9,423.67, according to data from digital currency tracker Coinmarketcap. While BTC has seen a slight pick-up in more recent trading it has remained at sub-$9,500 levels.
Yesterday’s plunge has taken the market by surprise, with investors and analysts unable to pinpoint a specific reason for the crash.
Dave Balter, chief executive officer of Flipside Crypto, suggested that the move might be related to upcoming BTC futures expirations.
“From our end, it looks like it was a sell-off to cash settle futures that are coming due on Friday for BTC,” Balter said, as quoted by Bloomberg.
The newswire also quoted Jeff Dorman, chief investment officer at Arca, who also mentioned the upcoming expirations, as well as weak trading volumes.
“Volumes are low and it takes very little to move markets right now, and you have big futures/options expirations coming up at the end of the week,” Dorman said.
However, he also highlighted the drops in the prices of several major altcoins. “The only definitive thing I can point to is that the move was led by declines in EOS, ETH, XRP, BCH, LTC and other large-cap tokens that have been out of favor for months. I just don’t think there are a lot of investors willing to defend price right now.”
In today’s trading, the Bitcoin price stood at $9,452.93, as of 10:02 BST. The digital coin has lost 7% of its value in the past 24 hours. Its total market cap currently stands at $169.2 billion.
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