Cryptocurrency markets suffer a sudden and severe faceplant

Image: Reuters/Dado Ruvic
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It has been one of those days in the global cryptocurrency market, with prices tumbling across the board.

More than $20 billion in market capitalization of crypto assets was erased in a matter of hours: bitcoin dropped by 6%, dipping below $7,000, and ether fell by 14%, approaching a one-year low. That’s at the time of writing—things move fast in the crypto world.

Some commentators blamed the downturn on reports that Goldman Sachs punted on plans to create a cryptocurrency trading desk, instead choosing to focus its crypto efforts on custody services, a considerably less sexy proposition. However, it seems unlikely that a single announcement—and one so mild in tone—could stoke such a wild sell-off. The crypto markets frequently suffer flash crashes, down to everything from low volumes to willful market manipulation. Assigning responsibility to any single event is a stretch.

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