It might not be a holly, jolly Christmas for all bitcoin investors.
The cryptocurrency plunged 20.1% to $12,350 on Friday, Dec. 22, punctuating a three-day decline that's seen prices fall from records near $20,000. At their lowest Friday, bitcoin prices dipped to $10,834.94, according to CoinDesk. Friday was the biggest intraday trading loss for bitcoin in nearly three years.
Bitcoin's market cap took a beating, down to about $189 billion Friday after reaching as high as nearly $300 billion last week. The digital asset has fallen about 37% from its record high set Dec. 18.
According to David Drake, founder and chairman of LDJ Capital, this isn't the great bitcoin bubble popping. Rather, day traders are simply taking profits and getting out.
"Everyone is taking profits and dumping their tokens and there's not much demand," Drake said. "It's just a nascent market."
Drake, who bought his first bitcoins in 2011, said he's a long-term bitcoin holder, so while it's tough to watch a dip this dramatic it's nothing to be overly concerned with. The fall is simply a side effect of foreign exchange and hedge fund daytraders taking profits.
"It's a roller coaster, just like the stock market," Drake said.
Reverberations of the dip were felt there, too, though. Grayscale's Bitcoin Investment Trust (GBTC) toppled 32% on Friday to $1,205. The trust's performance is directly tethered to bitcoin's price.
Other equities with heavy bitcoin exposure fell, too. Overstock.com Inc. (OSTK) - Get Report shares fell 8.1% to $62 and Square Inc.'s (SQ) - Get Report stock dipped 3% to $34.80. Shares of Long Blockchain Corp. (LTEA) , which announced Thursday it would rebrand to become a blockchain firm, fell 16.8% to $5.75.
Drake said bitcoin prices will return to gains before the new year. "This goes on every couple of weeks," he said.
But there's one bright spot even in the pits, Drake noted.
"Now is a great time to buy your Christmas gift," he said. "Buy crypto!"
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