Bitcoin tumbled below $23,000 on Monday, hitting its lowest level since December 2020, as investors dump crypto amid a broader sell-off in risk assets.
Meanwhile, a crypto lending company called Celsius has paused withdrawals for its customers, sparking fears of contagion into the broader market.
The world’s largest cryptocurrency bitcoin dropped below the $23,000 mark, according to CoinDesk data. At one point bitcoin fell about 17% to trade around $22,764. Some of those losses were later recovered, and around 2:20 p.m. on Wall Street bitcoin was 14.3% lower at $23,586.
Over the weekend and into Monday morning, more than $200 billion had been wiped off the entire cryptocurrency market. The cryptocurrency market capitalization fell below $1 trillion on Monday for the first time since February 2021, according to data from CoinMarketCap.
Macro factors are contributing to the bearishness in the crypto markets, with rampant inflation continuing and the U.S. Federal Reserve expected to hike interest rates this week to control rising prices.
Last week, U.S. indices sold off heavily, with the tech-heavy Nasdaq dropping sharply. Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies have tended to correlate with stocks and other risk assets. When these indices fall, crypto drops as well.