Cryptocurrencies gyrated sharply Tuesday, extending a recent run of wild swings.
For the first time since January, bitcoin — the world’s most popular digital coin — briefly dropped below $30,000, a key level that technical analysts monitor. It erased its gains for 2021 before recovering to trade at $32,481.93, according to CoinGecko, a crypto market data site.
Bitcoin at one point shed more than 10% to trade as low as $29,154.73, losing more than half its value since hitting a record high in April. That’s after a tremendous performance in 2020, with the digital currency surging more than 300%.
Other cryptos joined the sell-off before paring losses, with ethereum, the second-biggest digital currency by market value, slumping more than 5%. Now it’s ticked up 0.7% over the past 24 hours.
The selling also spilled over to smaller coins like Dogecoin, a meme-inspired crypto that at one point tumbled more than 25% to erase all of its gains since April. It has since cut declines and is down 1% in the past day.
Here’s what drove the latest sell-off:
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Why are cryptos falling?
After topping $64,000 in April, bitcoin has struggled to reclaim its all-time highs since then following a series of events. It came under pressure in May after tech billionaire Elon Musk, who has driven traders into frenzies by mentioning cryptos at times, said…