[THE INVESTOR] Bitcoin prices have dropped below US$5,000 for the first time this year, dragging down other major cryptocurrencies amid growing uncertainties.
Bitcoin, which has already lost more than 65 percent of its value this year, declined more than 22 percent last week, latest CoinDesk data showed.
Etherum and Ripple also declined 13 percent and 5 percent, repectively, last week. While the total market capitalization of cryptocurrencies tumbled to US$161 billion, the lowest since October last year, the data showed.
The decline coincided with a split of Bitcoin Cash, which was divided into two versions -- “Bitcoin ABC” and “Bitcoin SV.” Analysts said the split caused by a spat between Bitcoin Cash founder Roger Ver and Craig Wright, who previously declared himself as Satoshi Nakamoto, the creator of Bitcoin, added to uncertainties in broader crypto markets.
The decline also came as authorities strengthened their crackdown on cryptocurrencies. On Nov. 16, the US Securities and Exchange Commission imposed its first-ever penalties for ICO securities registration violations.
By Park Ga-young (firstname.lastname@example.org)