Bitcoin has managed to bounce back after crashing to an 18-month price low over the weekend.
The cryptocurrency is trading at just below $30,000 on Thursday, marking a 56 per cent drop from its all-time high last November, while other leading cryptocurrencies are also way down from their record highs.
The downturn has seen more than $1.5 trillion wiped from the market and led to warnings from analysts that another “crypto winter” similar to 2018 may be underway.
Bitcoin’s precarious price comes as El Salvador President Nayib Bukele hosts 44 countries on Monday to discuss the merits of the cryptocurrency and the benefits of adoption.
Eight months after El Salvador made bitcoin legal tender, several other countries appear close to adopting the cryptocurrency despite warnings from the IMF and some figures within the industry.
You can follow all the latest news, analysis and expert price predictions for bitcoin (BTC), Ethereum (ETH), Cardano (ADA), Solana (SOL) and other leading cryptocurrencies in our live coverage below.
El Salvador hosts 44 countries to discuss bitcoin
Bitcoin advocates defend crypto against exchange chief
Terra (LUNA) price crash continues
Billionaire’s tattoo mocked after crypto crashes to $0
15:08 , Anthony Cuthbertson
Billionaire crypto investor Mike Novogratz has spoken up for the first time since Terra’s LUNA crashed to $0.
The Galaxy Digital CEO was one of the most ouspoken advocates of the project, even going as far as to get a LUNA tattoo on his left arm when its price hit $100.
That piece of body art has since been described as the “worst tattoo in history”, though Novogratz claims he won’t be getting rid of it.
“With hindsight things always look clearer,” he wrote in an open letter. “My tattoo will be a constant reminder that venture investing requires humility.”
— Mark D 🇿🇦 (@MarkDorwie) May 12, 2022
You can read the full story here:
Bitcoin and Ethereum dip below key levels
12:40 , Anthony Cuthbertson
Both bitcoin (BTC) and Ethereum (ETH) have dropped below the levels they have managed to hold so well over the last few days. BTC fell below $30k, while ETH is currently trading below $2k, which analysts have blamed on the knock-on effect of a downturn with the US stock market.
Here’s what market analysts at the crypto exchange Bitfinex had to say to us:
Bitcoin is trading lower today after yesterday’s steep drop in US stock prices. Spiraling levels of inflation has left global financial markets staring into the abyss as the prospect of a global recession looms large. This is leaving all assets that have benefited from more than a decade of accommodative monetary policy from central banks vulnerable to a correction as interest rates rise.
Crypto features in latest episode of Decomplicated
12:37 , Anthony Cuthbertson
What are cryptocurrencies? If you’re reading this you probably already know, but just in case I thought I’d share the latest video in The Independent’s Decomplicated series.
The first episode was on non-fungible tokens (NFTs), while this one looks more broadly at bitcoin and the rest of the crypto space. Even if you just want a brush up on how it all works, it’s worth a watch.
Coinbase hits back at ‘crypto is dead’ comments
10:07 , Anthony Cuthbertson
Popukar crypto exchange Coinbase has published a blog post this morning in response to the recent market turmoil.
The post, titled ‘Long Live Crypto’, explains why such downturns should not be seen as disheartening if focus remains on “the long term view”.
Volatility is painful, and can be scary. Nobody likes to lose money in the short term — whether in crypto, or the stock market more broadly. That said, volatility is also natural for emerging technological breakthroughs like crypto. At Coinbase, we’re inspired by the long term view and the spirit of those who continue to keep innovating no matter the external environment.
Kate Rouch, chief marketing officer, Coinbase
The publicly traded firm, whose share price has halved since the start of the month, also shared a video to its social media channels criticising all the times crypto has been declared dead.
“It’s easy to write an obituary,” the blog post concluded. “It’s hard to bring something new to life.”
If we had a bitcoin for every time somebody said “crypto is dead” … pic.twitter.com/nlYWQXUFWO
— Coinbase (@coinbase) May 19, 2022
Bitcoin price crash doesn’t deter MicroStrategy
08:51 , Anthony Cuthbertson
MicroStrategy is not going to sell any of its vast bitcoin holdings or even adjust its crypto acquisition strategy, despite the recent market downturn.
The software firm is the biggest corporate investor in bitcoin, driven by CEO and co-founder Michael Saylor’s seemingly unwavering belief that it is the world’s greatest store of value.
The company’s new chief financial officer told the Wall Street Journal: “There are no scenarios that I’m aware [in which] we would sell.”
He added: “Some of the more recent volatility was certainly around some of the activity outside of bitcoin. For us, we monitor that from a market perspective, but there [isn’t] anything fundamental to bitcoin that we believe presents any issues against our strategy.”
Bitcoin, altcoin prices plummet
03:50 , Vishwam Sankaran
Bitcoin is down by over 4 per cent in the last 24 hours and is currently valued at about $29,000.
Ethereum has also dropped in value by over 6 per cent in the last day and by nearly 7 per cent compared to its price last week.
Other top cryptocurrencies including solana, cardano, and polkadot are also down by over 10 to 13 per cent in the last day.
Meme coins dogecoin and its spinoff shiba inu are also down by 8 to 10 per cent in the last 24 hours.
The overall crypto market is down by about 6 per cent in the last day and is valued at $1.22 trillion.
Bitcoin mining in China thrives despite ban
Wednesday 18 May 2022 14:21 , Anthony Cuthbertson
After a complete crackdown from authorities in China, underground operations in the country appear to be thriving, according to new data from the Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance (CCAF).
China’s bitcoin mining share fell from around 75 per cent to effectively zero last year, however the latest figures show that it has since rebounded to become the world’s second biggest crypto mining hub.
“This strongly suggests that significant underground mining activity has formed in the country, which empirically confirms what industry insiders have long been assuming,” CCAF wrote in a blog post detailing its findings.
“Access to off-grid electricity and geographically scattered, small-scale operations are among the major means used by underground miners to hide their operations from authorities and circumvent the ban.”
What actually happened to Terra LUNA and UST?
Wednesday 18 May 2022 12:38 , Anthony Cuthbertson
With bitcoin (BTC) and Ethereum (ETH) still languishing near 18-month lows, one of the causes of the crypto crash is still yet to be resolved.
Close to $60 billion has been wiped from the combined market caps of Terra’s LUNA and UST, with their downfall sparking a mass sell-off across the entire crypto space. Now, developers claim to have now come up with a revival plan.
Here’s a full rundown of how the catastrophe unfolded, and what might come next:
Bitcoin price sends crypto market into ‘extreme fear'
Tuesday 17 May 2022 19:59 , Anthony Cuthbertson
The Bitcoin Fear & Greed Index has just hit a 2.5-year low, falling to into single digits to register “extreme fear”.
Measuring sentiment using data from cryptocurrency exchanges, social media posts and market momentum, the index acts as a rough indicator as to how investors and traders are behaving.
The last time it was this low was during the market downturn in 2019, with some investors taking the index as a measure of whether to buy, sell or hold.
As its developers explain:
Extreme fear can be a sign that investors are too worried. That could be a buying opportunity.
When investors are getting too greedy, that means the market is due for a correction.
Bitcoin price dips back below $30k
Tuesday 17 May 2022 19:49 , Anthony Cuthbertson
The price of bitcoin (BTC) has taken another trip south of $30,000, though continues to trade in the $28,000-$32,000 range that it has remained within for most of the last week.
Ethereum (ETH) is also perilously close to dipping below the $2,000 level that it has managed to hold so well in recent days.
The period of relative stability may come as a respite for investors and traders, at least considering the recent market turmoil.
Bitcoin addresses with 0.01 BTC pass 10 million
Tuesday 17 May 2022 10:17 , Anthony Cuthbertson
The number of bitcoin addresses with a balance of at least 0.01 BTC has passed 10 million for the first time, according to data from Glassnode.
At current exchange rates, that works out to a balance of justover $300, signaling a major milestone for retail investors.
While it serves as a rough guide for seeing bitcoin’s growth, it is not an entirely accurate measure of how far adoption has spread., as some people meay have multiple addresses with this balance.
Bitcoin price continues to test $30k level
Tuesday 17 May 2022 09:03 , Anthony Cuthbertson
The price of both bitcoin (BTC) and Ethereum (ETH) are hovering precariously above the key levels of $30,000 and $2,000 respectively on Tuesday morning.
The two most valuable cryptocurrencies have dipped below those levels briefly in recent days but have managed to return to this support zone each time. If support fails and they experience a consistent run below these prices, then crypto market analysts fear a bigger sell-off could lead to a more sustained downturn and a longer-term bear market. Alternatively, upward momentum could be built from this level, leading to a broader recovery.
Until either occurs, it remains an uncertain time for the crypto space.
Bitcoin discussions begin in El Salvador
Tuesday 17 May 2022 08:48 , Anthony Cuthbertson
The biggest ever meeting of international delegates to discuss bitcoin is underway in El Salvador, with representatives from 44 countries taking part.
President Nayib Bukele is hosting the event, having overseen El Salvador’s move to become the first country in the world to adopt bitcoin as a legal form of tender last year. Central African Republic has since followed, and more countries in Asia, Africa and Latin America appear to be at least considering it.
“Bitcoin is good for the world,” President Bukele tweeted, along with an image of the delegation.
— Nayib Bukele (@nayibbukele) May 16, 2022
Terra (LUNA) price continues to fall
Monday 16 May 2022 17:08 , Anthony Cuthbertson
Since a near-total capitulation last week, Terra’s LUNA cryptocurrency has continued to experience heavy losses at the start of the week,
After losing more than 99 per cent of its value, any further losses won’t mean much to investors at this stage, though another 46 per cent drop over the last 24 hours appears to signal that confidence in the crypto project is yet to return.
Terra (LUNA) still maintains a market cap of close to $1 billion, so it is not yet completely dead, though it has fallen from the top 10 most valuable cryptocurrencies to outside of the top 200.
Crypto chief sees no future for bitcoin as currency
Monday 16 May 2022 15:59 , Anthony Cuthbertson
The founder of the FTX cryptocurrency exchange has claimed that bitcoin has no future as a payments network due to its energy-intensive proof-of-work system.
Sam Bankman-Fried told the Financial Times that while bitcoin serves a useful function as a store of value, P0W means it is not scalable for use as a currency.
“Things that you’re doing millions of transactions a second with have to be extremely efficient and lightweight and lower energy cost,” he said. “Proof of stake networks are.”
His comments drew immediate criticism from bitcoin advocates, who noted that the Lightning network was already being used to solve these issues on nationwide scales, like in El Salvador.
“Bitcoin is the future of money,” said MicroStrategy CEO Michael Saylor. “Lightning is the future of payments.”
— Michael Saylor⚡️ (@saylor) May 16, 2022
Bitcoin price crash memes
Monday 16 May 2022 15:46 , Anthony Cuthbertson
I’ve been reporting on bitcoin for nearly a decade now, and one thing I’ve noticed is that there is always far more interest in stories when the market is crashing compared to when it is rising.
While some of these readers may be cautious investors checking whether the downturn is the ‘big one’, and therefore time to pull out, the majority of clicks appear to be those indulging in a bit of schadenfreude - at least judging by the comments and memes. (One popular Twitter account dedicated to just this is ‘Crypto Bros Taking Ls’, which has gained nearly half a million followers since joining the platform this time last year.)
You know its a big crash when even non-crypto accounts are getting involved, and the latest downturn has been a feeding frenzy. It has drawn mockery from seemingly the least likely of sources, with even Ryanair - consistently voted among the worst airlines in Which? surveys - having a pop:
El Salvador hosts 44 countries to discuss bitcoin
Monday 16 May 2022 14:24 , Anthony Cuthbertson
El Salvador President Nayib Bukele appears far from being spooked by the latest price crash, instead annoucning that he will be hosting 44 countries to discuss the benefits of bitcoin.
Representatives of Africa’s two biggest economies - Egypt and Nigeria - will be among those attending, with one of the main topics for discussion being that of financial inclusion and banking the unbanked.
Tomorrow, 32 central banks and 12 financial authorities (44 countries) will meet in El Salvador to discuss financial inclusion, digital economy, banking the unbanked, the #Bitcoin rollout and its benefits in our country.
— Nayib Bukele (@nayibbukele) May 16, 2022
You can read the full story here:
Hello and welcome...
Monday 16 May 2022 13:53 , Anthony Cuthbertson
to The Independent’s live coverage of bitcoin and the rest of the crypto market.
After crashing as low as $26,350 last week, bitcoin is back above $30,000 - but only just. It is the same price level BTC was able to hold on two previous downturns, though it is too early to say whether this was the bottom of the current cycle.
We’ll be bringing you all the latest news, market analysis and expert price predictions right here.