Bitcoin slips sharply from record highs

A representation of virtual currency Bitcoin is seen in front of a stock graph in this illustration taken November 19, 2020. — Reuters pic
A representation of virtual currency Bitcoin is seen in front of a stock graph in this illustration taken November 19, 2020. — Reuters pic

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LONDON, Feb 22 — Bitcoin fell sharply today after surging to a record US$58,354 a day earlier, as a selloff in global equities curbed risk appetite.

The most popular cryptocurrency rallied over the weekend to record levels, almost doubling year-to-date. It hit a market capitalisation of US$1 trillion on Friday.

Bitcoin’s gains have been fuelled by signs it is gaining acceptance among mainstream investors and companies, from Tesla Inc and Mastercard Inc to BNY Mellon .

It fell as much as 6 per cent today, and was last trading down 4.4 per cent at US$54,941. Rival cryptocurrency ether fell 7 per cent to US$1,798 after also hitting a record high on Saturday.

Traders said the move was largely technical, and not tied to any particular news catalyst.

“We did finally see some momentum gathering over the weekend, but weekend rallies haven’t been sustainable lately,” said Joseph Edwards of Enigma Securities, a cryptocurrency broker in London.

“We do tend to think that there’s a good chance of a down week and small correction coming in off of this, although it does little to dull medium-term prospects.”

Tesla boss Elon Musk, whose tweets on bitcoin have added fuel to the cryptocurrency’s rally, said on Saturday the price of bitcoin and ethereum seemed high. — Reuters

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