The three largest cryptocurrencies all took hits during Tuesday's dropPixabay
As of this writing, Bitcoin currently sits at a $9,637 USD value. Around 1 p.m. on Tuesday, it dipped below $10,000 and that's where it has been since. Analysts are looking to other large digital currencies for answers, as the 20 biggest currencies by market capitalization all declined.
CoinDesk noted that bitcoin also traded 12 percent lower than usual, and the publication hinted that there might be a strong connection between digital currency exchanges and the drop.
Bitcoin wasn't the only currency affected. Ethereum -- the seemingly unshakeable cryptocurrency and the second-largest currency by market cap -- traded at 9 percent lower at $1,073 today. Ripple, the world's third-largest crypo, fell to $1.19 according to CoinMarketCap.
There were two theories as to what contributed to bitcoin's descent. The first was a series of rumors that claimed cryptocurrency Tether wasn't actually real and that it was made up to buoy the value of bitcoin. Some market analysts predict that if that actualy turns out to be true, bitcoin's overall value could drop as much as 80 percent. The other possible driving force behind the drop could've been from South Korea's Financial Service Commission fully enforcing its new cryptocurrency measures. There was also the news that the United States Securities and Exchange Commission would freeze assets of an ICO (initial coin offerings) that had raised over $600 million.
The U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin addressed the public and the Senate's Housing and Urban Affairs Committee regarding cryptocurrencies particularly with regard to money laundering.
"I also want to make sure that consumers understand the issues around cryptocurrencies," Mnuchin said.
In total, Bitcoin has dropped 28 percent during the month of January. It's current market cap is approximately $170 billion. Despite it's dip today, ethereum is up by 42 percent this month with a market cap of $104 billion, according to the latest from CoinMarketCap.
Interesting Engineering will continue to update this story as it evolves.
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