Earlier today the cryptocurrency market suffered a massive decline in price, losing approximately $10 billion in the space of a few hours. The market currently sits at around $124 billion, down from $134 billion early this morning.
Ethereum appears to have been worst affected, suffering a massive nine percent loss within the first hour and then continuing a gradual decline to an eventual 13 percent in total losses.
The digital asset is now priced at only $130 after trading sideways at around $150 for the majority of this year. As a result of the loss, Ethereum has moved back into third place on market cap charts. The overall Ethereum market cap is now only $13.6 billion – $40 million shy of Ripple’s XRP cryptocurrency which only suffered 6 percent losses and took over second place.
The sudden selloff appears to be largely unexpected in cryptocurrency circles. While some analysts foresaw a possible decline, it appears to have surprised many and left even fewer with an explanation. However, eToro senior market analyst Mati Greenspan doesn’t see the drop as particularly worrying.
“While Bitcoin was unable to hold on to Sunday’s momentum, it’s important to remember that this price decline still remains within the broader $3,000 – $5,000 range, meaning the significance of this should not be overstated,” he said.
Not all analysts are as optimistic though. Speaking to Bloomberg news, founder of Ikigai crypto hedge fund Travis Kling, said: “It’s unlikely that the bottom is in for Bitcoin  ..evidence leads us to believe that we’ll see more lows before we head higher.”
A recent report from China’s state-run media publication National Business Daily suggests that as much as 87 percent of all Bitcoin (BTC) is controlled by 1 percent of addresses, indicating increased potential for market manipulation. While a large percentage of that is held in official exchange wallets, the existence of Bitcoin “whales” continue to pose a threat to market movements.