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The cryptocurrency market is facing an intense sell-off as investors are confounded by heightened discussion of regulatory scrutiny and infighting over a schism in bitcoin's most notable spin-off, bitcoin money.
At around 1:50 p.m. London time (8:50 a.m. ET), the entire market capitalization of cryptocurrencies that's worked out by multiplying prices from the number of tokens in circulation had fallen to around $138.6 billion, according to CoinMarketCap data.
That marks cryptocurrencies' lowest level since September 2017, and also a more than 80 percent decline which translates to almost $700 billion since the peak of over $830 billion their market value reached at the start of the year.
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Prices were hit with an initial downturn a week, ending months of relatively steady trading for the world's largest and best-known digital advantage, bitcoin an unusual phenomenon for an asset known for its wild volatility.
That move came on the back of news that bitcoin money's blockchain essentially a digital ledger with no central power overseeing it had been set to be divided into two, an event known as a"hard fork."
Forks, that are essentially software updates, usually happen when there is a disagreement about how to scale a cryptocurrency to deal with a higher volume of trading, like the August 2017 branch that led to the creation of bitcoin money.
Last week's fork saw bitcoin money cloven into two new, separate digital This Site currencies,"Bitcoin ABC" check my blog and"Bitcoin SV" short for"Satoshi's Vision" the latter being the brainchild of controversial entrepreneur Craig Wright, who claims to be bitcoin inventor Satoshi Nakamoto.
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As a result, various cryptocurrencies dropped, with bitcoin dropping below $6,000 and multiple other digital assets following lawsuit.
Fast-track to Friday, and the world's biggest virtual coin is trading at a price of $4,300, down over 4 percent in the last 24 hours, according to CoinMarketCap. Meantime, XRP, a digital token linked to blockchain company Ripple, climbed 6.7 percent to under 41 cents, while ether, the electronic token of the Ethereum blockchain, dropped more than 7 percent to just under $122. .
The Cryptocurrency Market Capitalizations page displays the current market cap rankings for major cryptocurrencies based on a currency you select on peak of the page. The page initially shows using"USD" as the crossrate to compute against. The listing of cryptocurrencies, along with information for the page, is updated and ranked every 15 minutes.
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