More bad news for bitcoin: The cryptocurrecy fell below $8,000 this past weekend, dropping about 25 percent so far this month.
According to The Street, bitcoin has now fallen about 60 percent from the all-time high of more than $19,000 the crypto hit in December.
This is just the latest dip bitcoin has experienced since the beginning of the year, which started due to reports that South Korea and China were thinking about banning the trade of cryptocurrencies, which led to fears of a wider regulatory crackdown.
“There is a lot of panic in the market. People are selling to try and get the hell out of there,” Charles Hayter, founder of CryptoCompare, said at the time. “You have more regulatory uncertainty … and because of these falls, you have these other fallouts.”
The declines could also be attributed to comments from the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), which pointed out that investors may have a false sense of security triggered by the operating label of an “exchange.”
“The SEC staff has concerns that many online trading platforms appear to investors as SEC-registered and regulated marketplaces when they are not,” the agency said via a statement.
The SEC went on to say that the platforms likely would need to be registered as regulated national securities exchanges or as alternate trading systems in order to protect investors.
Concerns over regulation will likely continue to plague the crypto, according to analysts. This week, Fundstrat explained how the crypto could even possibly fall below $6,000 — which is interesting, since its founder Tom Lee began the year predicting that prices would reach $25,000 by the end of 2018. By 2022, Lee believed bitcoin prices could get to $125,000.
“It has been a challenging few weeks for bitcoin as the combination of negative headlines coupled with weak prices have added to further worsening of investor sentiment,” said Fundstrat. “And when sentiment is this weak, the market is increasingly ‘fire, ready, aim’ — meaning any headline today is likely to trigger selling.”
Bitcoin isn’t the only crypto suffering: Ripple’s market cap has dropped about 47 percent to $23 billion during the last month. However, unlike bitcoin, Ripple has made progress in the real world as a payments platform.