Cryptocurrencies fell to new lows due to regulatory concerns and as investors worldwide became wary of risky assets as interest rate hikes loomed around the world.
Bitcoin, the most valuable cryptocurrency by market capitalization, fell about 5% to a three-month low of $18,387. Ether, the second most valuable cryptocurrency, fell 3% to a two-month low of $1,285 and is now down more than 10% in the last 24 hours. The majority of the smaller tokens were darker in colour. The Ethereum blockchain, which underpins the ether token, received a major upgrade over the weekend known as the Merge, which changes how transactions are processed and reduces energy consumption. The token's value has dropped amid speculation that remarks made last week by U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission Chairman Gary Gensler suggested the new structure would be subject to additional regulation. Trades surrounding the upgrade were also unwound.