Bitcoin dips below $18,000

Talk of G7 regulation measures and rumours of a possible Chinese clampdown serves to dampen appetite for leading cryptocurrency

Bitcoin has dipped below $18,000, falling by as much as 7.5 per cent from the week’s starting point.

Both media and investor interest in Bitcoin has increased following its bumper autumn run from $10,000 to an all-time high of $19,928. The surge can also be said to have triggered a surge in regulatory scrutiny.

This week saw the finance ministers and central bank officials of the Group of Seven (G7) nations repeat their “strong support” for the regulation of digital currencies. Meanhile, oft-repeated rumours swell of an imminent clampdown by Chinese regulatory authorities.

Wednesday also saw the launch of the Bitwise 10 Crypto Index Fund. The fund has around $120m (£90m, €99m) in assets under management (AUM) and will go up against Grayscale’s Digital Large Cap Fund, which has risen to around $170m in AUM since its launch last year.

Meanwhile, Bitcoin believer MicroStrategy outlined its plan to sell $550m of unsecured, convertible senior notes in order to raise further capital to buy Bitcoin, having upped its holding with another $50m purchase last week. The business intelligence firm had initially planned on selling $400m of the debt instruments when it announced its decision on Monday.

While MicroStrategy CEO Michael Saylor might be the most prominent US CEO to have bet long on Bitcoin, arguably a more notable American businessman revealed he had changed his mind on the cryptocurrency. In a Reddit “Ask Me Anything”, Bridgewater Associates co-chief investment officer Ray Dalio recognised that “Bitcoin (and some other digital currencies) have over the last 10 years established themselves as interesting gold-like asset alternatives”.

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The billionaire added: “So it could serve as a diversifier to gold and other such storehold of wealth assets. The main thing is to have some of these types of asset (with limited supply, that are mobile, and that are storeholds of wealth), including stocks, in one’s portfolio and to diversify among them. Not enough people do that.”

Bitcoin was trading down 2.3 per cent by mid-afternoon at $18,302.90, having fallen as low as $17,750.


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