The cryptocurrency markets posted a multibillion-dollar decline on Wednesday, with the vast majority of top-tier coins posting minor declines. The bitcoin price ticked down to $5,631 after threatening to press lower, while the ethereum price dropped back below $300 after achieving that mark the day before.
These minor declines culminated in a $2.6 billion decrease in the total cryptocurrency market cap. The crypto market cap began the day at $169.2 billion but began to slide early Wednesday morning, briefly dropping below $162 billion before recovering to a present mark of $166.6 billion.
The bitcoin price declined another 1% on Wednesday, but the damage could have been worse. Early this morning, the bitcoin price briefly dropped below the $5,400 mark for the first time since last Wednesday, but it has since recovered to a present mark of $5,631. Nevertheless, this represents a more than $550 decline from the all-time high bitcoin set last week. Bitcoin now has a market cap of $93.7 billion.
As CCN.com reported yesterday, a portion of this decline should be attributed to the Bitcoin Gold fork. The blockchain snapshot took place Tuesday morning, freeing traders to sell their bitcoins while still receiving a maximum amount of bitcoin gold. Bitcoin gold is not expected to have much value, but neither traders nor investors wanted to leave any potential “free money” on the table.
The ethereum price has continuously gravitated toward the $300 mark during October. Despite increases as high as $348 and declines as low as $279, ethereum continues to find itself pulled back into the $300 orbit. On Tuesday, the ethereum price had climbed as high as $312, perhaps giving investors hope that it was going to break out of its recent slump. However, ethereum ultimately found itself drawn back to the $300 level and is currently trading at $297. Ethereum now has a market cap of $28.3 billion.
On Tuesday, traders began to pour capital back into the altcoin markets, restoring a bit of balance to the bitcoin-heavy total crypto market cap. Unfortunately for altcoin investors, that phenomenon does not currently appear to be evolving into a trend, as altcoins fell back into decline on Wednesday.
The ripple price declined 2%, forcing its market cap back down to $7.9 billion after touching the $11 billion mark as recently as October 16. The bitcoin cash price dropped 1%, while litecoin posted a top 10-worst 5% pullback.
Dash and NEM each tapered by about 1%, while NEO declined 4% to just under $30. Bitconnect, continuing its habit of bucking the prevailing trend, made slight progress to place its price just pennies away from $200. Monero rounded out the top 10 with a 3% decline that reduced its price to $87.
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