Owning Bitcoin is always a rollercoaster ride of emotion and monetary loss, but this morning was particularly bad. Everyone’s favorite cryptocurrency started the day at $1,150 per Bitcoin, before dropping to a low of $887.47 by noon. At one point, people were selling so fast that the currency lost $200 in value in a single hour.
According to sources reached by CoinDesk, the price drop wasn’t the result of a few large players making moves or the fault of one particular exchange, as has happened in the past. Compared to the big price fluctuations a few years ago, the volume of Bitcoin being traded is far higher these days — 37 times higher than in 2013, according to Chinese bitcoin exchange Huobi.
That would indicate that the price fluctuations are an underlying feature of Bitcoin, rather than a teething problem. Price fluctuations have been Bitcoin’s biggest problem in making it mainstream: no retailer really wants to take payment in Bitcoin when the price can fluctuate by double digits in a single hour. It also puts off serious long-term investors, given the potential for an investment to be decimated in such a short space of time.
Despite the problems, however, Bitcoin has been having a good few months. The price of a single coin has been above $1,000 for weeks, matching the previous all-time highs in the early heyday of Bitcoin.