Bitcoin’s bubble just burst, at least a little bit.
The high-flying cryptocurrency declined more than $2,000 dollars in the span of a few hours on Wednesday. It’s one of the sharpest drops in recent memory and a stark reminder of the volatility of the cryptopcurrency that is suddenly on everyone’s mind.
Bitcoin’s recent rise happened almost as quickly as its Wednesday decline. Bitcoin enthusiasts cheered on Tuesday as 1 BTC surpassed $10,000 for the first time, only to see it hit $11,000 the next day.
Wednesday’s crash pushed Bitcoin’s value below briefly below $9,000 on at least one exchange, though it appeared to have recovered some value shortly thereafter. As of 3:17 P.M. EST, Coindesk had Bitcoin trading at $9,852.54.
It continued to recover throughout the day, trading around $10,100 around 5 P.M.
The graph below, from Coindesk.com, shows the sudden drop off on Wednesday afternoon.
Even with the decline, one Bitcoin is worth more than it was a week ago, when it was trading around $8,000, and far more than one year ago, as the graphs below show.
Thought Bitcoin is still far more valuable now that it was even just a little while ago, Wednesday’s sudden decline shows just how volatile Bitcoin can be, even as it gains wider acceptance as a viable store of value.
The decline also provides more fuel for Bitcoin skeptics who have been sounding the alarm over what they see as dangerous speculation. It also triggered plenty of schadenfreude on Twitter.