Bitcoin price news – BTC price sends crypto market into ‘extreme fear’

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Bitcoin is down more than 50 per cent in May 2022 after its price peaked in November 2021 (Getty Images)
Bitcoin is down more than 50 per cent in May 2022 after its price peaked in November 2021 (Getty Images)

Bitcoin has managed to bounce back after crashing to an 18-month price low over the weekend.

The cryptocurrency is trading at around $30,000 at the start of the week, marking a 56 per cent drop from its all-time high last November, while other leading cryptocurrencies are also way down from their record highs.

The downturn has seen more than $1.5 trillion wiped from the market and led to warnings from analysts that another “crypto winter” similar to 2018 may be underway.

Bitcoin’s precarious price comes as El Salvador President Nayib Bukele hosts 44 countries on Monday to discuss the merits of the cryptocurrency and the benefits of adoption.

Eight months after El Salvador made bitcoin legal tender, several other countries appear close to adopting the cryptocurrency despite warnings from the IMF and some figures within the industry.

You can follow all the latest news, analysis and expert price predictions for bitcoin (BTC), Ethereum (ETH), Cardano (ADA), Solana (SOL) and other leading cryptocurrencies in our live coverage below.

Key points

  • El Salvador hosts 44 countries to discuss bitcoin

  • Bitcoin advocates defend crypto against exchange chief

  • Terra (LUNA) price crash continues

Bitcoin price sends crypto market into ‘extreme fear'

19:59 , Anthony Cuthbertson

The Bitcoin Fear & Greed Index has just hit a 2.5-year low, falling to into single digits to register “extreme fear”.

Measuring sentiment using data from cryptocurrency exchanges, social media posts and market momentum, the index acts as a rough indicator as to how investors and traders are behaving.

The last time it was this low was during the market downturn in 2019, with some investors taking the index as a measure of whether to buy, sell or hold.

As its developers explain:

  • Extreme fear can be a sign that investors are too worried. That could be a buying opportunity.

  • When investors are getting too greedy, that means the market is due for a correction.

Bitcoin price dips back below $30k

19:49 , Anthony Cuthbertson

The price of bitcoin (BTC) has taken another trip south of $30,000, though continues to trade in the $28,000-$32,000 range that it has remained within for most of the last week.

Ethereum (ETH) is also perilously close to dipping below the $2,000 level that it has managed to hold so well in recent days.

The period of relative stability may come as a respite for investors and traders, at least considering the recent market turmoil.

Bitcoin addresses with 0.01 BTC pass 10 million

10:17 , Anthony Cuthbertson

The number of bitcoin addresses with a balance of at least 0.01 BTC has passed 10 million for the first time, according to data from Glassnode.

At current exchange rates, that works out to a balance of justover $300, signaling a major milestone for retail investors.

While it serves as a rough guide for seeing bitcoin’s growth, it is not an entirely accurate measure of how far adoption has spread., as some people meay have multiple addresses with this balance.

Bitcoin price continues to test $30k level

09:03 , Anthony Cuthbertson

The price of both bitcoin (BTC) and Ethereum (ETH) are hovering precariously above the key levels of $30,000 and $2,000 respectively on Tuesday morning.

The two most valuable cryptocurrencies have dipped below those levels briefly in recent days but have managed to return to this support zone each time. If support fails and they experience a consistent run below these prices, then crypto market analysts fear a bigger sell-off could lead to a more sustained downturn and a longer-term bear market. Alternatively, upward momentum could be built from this level, leading to a broader recovery.

Until either occurs, it remains an uncertain time for the crypto space.

Bitcoin discussions begin in El Salvador

08:48 , Anthony Cuthbertson

The biggest ever meeting of international delegates to discuss bitcoin is underway in El Salvador, with representatives from 44 countries taking part.

President Nayib Bukele is hosting the event, having overseen El Salvador’s move to become the first country in the world to adopt bitcoin as a legal form of tender last year. Central African Republic has since followed, and more countries in Asia, Africa and Latin America appear to be at least considering it.

“Bitcoin is good for the world,” President Bukele tweeted, along with an image of the delegation.

Terra (LUNA) price continues to fall

Monday 16 May 2022 17:08 , Anthony Cuthbertson

Since a near-total capitulation last week, Terra’s LUNA cryptocurrency has continued to experience heavy losses at the start of the week,

After losing more than 99 per cent of its value, any further losses won’t mean much to investors at this stage, though another 46 per cent drop over the last 24 hours appears to signal that confidence in the crypto project is yet to return.

Terra (LUNA) still maintains a market cap of close to $1 billion, so it is not yet completely dead, though it has fallen from the top 10 most valuable cryptocurrencies to outside of the top 200.

Crypto chief sees no future for bitcoin as currency

Monday 16 May 2022 15:59 , Anthony Cuthbertson

The founder of the FTX cryptocurrency exchange has claimed that bitcoin has no future as a payments network due to its energy-intensive proof-of-work system.

Sam Bankman-Fried told the Financial Times that while bitcoin serves a useful function as a store of value, P0W means it is not scalable for use as a currency.

“Things that you’re doing millions of transactions a second with have to be extremely efficient and lightweight and lower energy cost,” he said. “Proof of stake networks are.”

His comments drew immediate criticism from bitcoin advocates, who noted that the Lightning network was already being used to solve these issues on nationwide scales, like in El Salvador.

“Bitcoin is the future of money,” said MicroStrategy CEO Michael Saylor. “Lightning is the future of payments.”

Bitcoin price crash memes

Monday 16 May 2022 15:46 , Anthony Cuthbertson

I’ve been reporting on bitcoin for nearly a decade now, and one thing I’ve noticed is that there is always far more interest in stories when the market is crashing compared to when it is rising.

While some of these readers may be cautious investors checking whether the downturn is the ‘big one’, and therefore time to pull out, the majority of clicks appear to be those indulging in a bit of schadenfreude - at least judging by the comments and memes. (One popular Twitter account dedicated to just this is ‘Crypto Bros Taking Ls’, which has gained nearly half a million followers since joining the platform this time last year.)

You know its a big crash when even non-crypto accounts are getting involved, and the latest downturn has been a feeding frenzy. It has drawn mockery from seemingly the least likely of sources, with even Ryanair - consistently voted among the worst airlines in Which? surveys - having a pop:

El Salvador hosts 44 countries to discuss bitcoin

Monday 16 May 2022 14:24 , Anthony Cuthbertson

El Salvador President Nayib Bukele appears far from being spooked by the latest price crash, instead annoucning that he will be hosting 44 countries to discuss the benefits of bitcoin.

Representatives of Africa’s two biggest economies - Egypt and Nigeria - will be among those attending, with one of the main topics for discussion being that of financial inclusion and banking the unbanked.

You can read the full story here:

El Salvador urges 44 countries to adopt bitcoin

Hello and welcome...

Monday 16 May 2022 13:53 , Anthony Cuthbertson

to The Independent’s live coverage of bitcoin and the rest of the crypto market.

After crashing as low as $26,350 last week, bitcoin is back above $30,000 - but only just. It is the same price level BTC was able to hold on two previous downturns, though it is too early to say whether this was the bottom of the current cycle.

We’ll be bringing you all the latest news, market analysis and expert price predictions right here.