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Cryptocurrency prices stabilise after wild weekend



Cryptocurrency prices were volatile on Monday morning, after a wild weekend of selling that saw some tokens plunge by as much as 13%. 

Bitcoin (BTC-USD) was down 1.2% by 9.40am in London to trade at $57,096. Meanwhile, ethereum (ETH-USD), the second largest cryptocurrency, was down around 1%, following a rally of about about 1.2% to trade at $2,253.41. Ripple (XRP-USD) had bounced by 9.2% to trade at $5.119 only to retreat to 1.2% higher.

Over the weekend, alarm bells sounded in crypto markets following reports that the US Treasury was planning to censure financial institutions for money laundering carried out through digital assets.

Data website CoinMarketCap cited a blackout in China’s Xinjiang region for the fall, which allegedly powers much of Bitcoin mining — the process by which new bitcoins are entered into circulation.

By the end of Sunday, bitcoin had fallen by 9%. Ethereum was down 13%. 

Despite Monday’s mild recovery, bitcoin remained lower than it was a month ago.

Elsewhere on Monday, Dogecoin (DOGE-USD) was up 22.8% but still below all-time highs seen last week. The cryptocurrency was trading at $0.3465.

Over the past week, the joke token has rocketed as much as 550%. The rally has pushed it beyond the value of several major banks on Friday, including Barclays (BARC.L) and Lloyds Banking Group (LLOYD.L). Dogecoin was ranked among the tenth largest cryptocurrency in the world.

Dogecoin's one-month look. Chart: Yahoo Finance UK
Dogecoin’s one-month look. Chart: Yahoo Finance UK

The volatility in crypto comes days after bitcoin approached $65,000 ahead of the listing of cryptocurrency trading platform Coinbase. Coinbase last week became the first major crypto firm to list on the Nasdaq (^IXIC).

Bitcoin prices have been up and down over the last few months as governments and regulators hone in on the sector.

On Friday, bitcoin plunged 4% after the Central Bank of Turkey banned the use of cryptocurrencies and other digital assets for payments.

Bitcoin's ascent. One-year chart. Chart: Yahoo Finance UK
Bitcoin’s ascent. One-year chart. Chart: Yahoo Finance UK

“The majority of crypto firms want to make sure that their compliance process is top-notch because they have seen a clear road map of success, which is laid by Coinbase,” said Naeem Aslam, chief market analyst at Avatrade. 

“By being compliant, they are likely to attract more capital and promote new technologies. Another fact is that institutional buying power is still much bigger than retail money, and we have only seen a small fraction of that money.”

Earlier in 2021, the market value of all bitcoin in circulation hit $1tn for the first time, after a more than 800% surge. In December, it soared past Visa (V) to become the world’s largest financial service.

In October last year, Bitcoin got a big boost in sentiment after California-based payments platform PayPal (PYPL) said it would allow customers to hold the cryptocurrency in their digital wallets.

Other signs of rising mainstream acceptance include JPMorgan (JPM) decision to start banking Coinbase and the Gemini platforms, and Visa and Mastercard’s decisions to provide services to crypto companies.

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