Bitcoin dropped to as low as $9,000 in volatile trade yesterday, losing more than a fifth of its value since hitting an all-time high of $11,395 on Wednesday.
“Naturally, a few of the early bitcoin traders are taking some profits off the table,” said Charles Hayter, CEO and co-founder of CryptoCompare.com. “Volatility is in the market at the moment, and that means both positive and negative moves.”
According to news from Reuters, the fall happened as bitcoin was up almost 1,100 percent year-to-date on Wednesday. As of 1500 GMT on Thursday, it was still up around 880 percent.
The cryptocurrency’s surge is a sign that it is gaining traction in the mainstream investment world. In the past week, Google searches for “bitcoin” exceeded searches for “Trump” for the first time, and several large market exchanges – including NASDAQ, CBOE Holdings and CME Group – have said they are planning to provide futures contracts based on bitcoin.
In addition, London-based Blockchain.info, one of the biggest global bitcoin wallet providers, revealed this week that it added a record number of new users, with more than 100,000 customers signing up, taking the total number to more than 19 million.
But bitcoin’s rapid rise has also prompted warnings that it had reached bubble territory. Google Trends noted the search term “buy bitcoin with credit card” is nearing its historic peak, with the inclination to use credit cards to purchase the volatile digital currency asset making it “a cautious note.”
And the Bank of England’s deputy governor recently said investors should “do their homework” before investing in the digital currency.
Bitcoin’s fall on Thursday dragged down the prices of other cryptocurrencies, with Ethereum, bitcoin’s biggest rival, falling as much as 19 percent on the day. For the month, bitcoin is still on track for a more than 40 percent price increase.