It’s been a week that many investors wish they could erase, one that began with much promise but ended in despair. The week’s highlight was the Bitcoin Cash hard fork which took place on Thursday. And while the battle between Roger Ver and Craig Wright took center stage, investors were losing billions of dollars as the top cryptos shed double digits. Just a day before the hard fork, Bitcoin hit its lowest level in over a year, a deviation from the stability it has experienced in the past few months. All the other cryptos in the top 20 saw double-digit losses, with Ethereum losing its position as the most valuable altcoin to Ripple, a position Ripple has continued to hold onto.
The Fork, And Its Aftermath On The Market
Bitcoin’s volatility had become a thing of the past for the last two months. The crypto king had maintained its price in the $6,400 range, being even less volatile than the stocks in the U.S market. This went through the window on November 14, just a day before the Bitcoin Cash fork.
Bitcoin started the day trading at $6,365, but in just a few hours, it had shed 17 percent and $17 billion in market capitalization in an unexpected flash crash. Bitcoin dropped to $5,300 in some markets such as Bitstamp, itBit and Coinbase. This was the lowest it had traded all year and the lowest since mid-October 2017. Bitcoin has since then recovered slightly and is currently trading at $5,604, a 1 percent rise in the past 24 hours.
Ethereum didn’t fare well either and dropped from $206 to hit $170. As if this wasn’t enough for the Ethereum community, it lost its position as the most-valuable altcoin to its eternal rival, Ripple’s XRP. While XRP also saw double-digit losses, it proved to be more resilient than Ether, ultimately snatching the position.
Initially, the gap between the two was limited to less than half a billion dollars and many thought Ethereum would reclaim its position with little trouble. However, XRP has proven to be a worthy competitor and the gap has continued to grow. At press time, XRP was $2.5 billion ahead of Ether, having gained 5.5 percent in the past 24 hours. Trading at $175, Ethereum had gained a slight 1 percent and as things stand, regaining its position could prove to be an uphill battle.
No major crypto was unscathed by the flash crash on Wednesday and most are yet to recover from the losses. EOS is trading at $4.5, Litecoin is at $42, Monero is at $88 while Dash is at $133. The crypto that has been on the spotlight, Bitcoin Cash, has lost 40 percent from its monthly high of $635 achieved a week before the hard fork. BCH currently trades at $383, having lost 2.2 percent in the past 24 hours – the only crypto in the top 15 that is on the red.