Arthur J. Villasanta – Fourth Estate Contributor
Washington, DC, United States (4E) – The three most valuable cryptocurrencies — Bitcoin, Ethereum and Ripple — lost anywhere from 48 percent to 77 percent of their value in the first quarter, setting the stage for worst things to come for the beleaguered alternatives to money.
Bitcoin and Ethereum had their worst first-quarter price performances in history during the quarter. But Ripple’s sickening plunge eclipsed the losses of both these cryptocurrencies, plunging 77 percent.
Bitcoin plummeted from $13,412.44 to $6,928.85 in the first quarter ending March 31, or a loss of more than 48 percent, said industry website CoinDesk that tracks the price across a number of exchanges.
Its previous biggest decline occurred in the first quarter of 2013 when it fell 37.9 percent from $770.44 to $478.72. Over $119.9 billion was wiped off the market capitalization or value of Bitcoin from Q1 2013 to Q1 2018.
Ethereum saw a 47.7 percent decline in price in the first quarter of 2018. Its value fell from from $755.76 to $394.65, according to Coinmarketcap.com, another site that tracks the price of various digital currencies across exchanges. In the first quarter of 2016, and 2017, ethereum was over 1,100 percent and 550 percent higher, respectively.
Ripple was the worst-performing among major cryptocurrencies in the first quarter of 2018. It lost 77 percent, falling from $2.30 to $0.509565, according to Coinmarketcap.com. This was not ripple’s worst first quarter, however. Ripple fell 96 percent in 2014.
Cryptocurrencies are falling dast and furious because of increasing regulatory scrutiny from major governments worldwide and an advertising crackdown by Google, Facebook and Twitter banned cryptocurrency ads, which have banned cryptocurrency ads.
China and South Korea are imposing onerous rules on cryptocurrencies while the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) will eventually regulate cryptocurrencies. The Bank of England is pushng hard for more regulation of cryptocurrencies.
Google, Facebook and Twitter banned cryptocurrency ads in the first quarter of the year, a move that accelerated the devaluation of cryptocurrencies. Worse, the amount of new money coming into cryptocurrencies is slowing down, which might mean that growth won’t be as rapid as previous years.
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