CryptoWatch: Bitcoin tumbles over 10% after South Korean exchange hack


Cryptocurrency prices plummeted over the weekend after South Korean exchange Coinrail said it was the victim of a hack.

Coinrail, which is the 99th biggest exchange with 24-hour volume of $2.66 million, froze its website with a statement reading: “On June 10, there was a system check due to the hacking attempt at dawn. At present, 70% of your coin rail total coin / token reserves have been confirmed to be safely stored and moved to a cold wallet and are in storage.”

A single bitcoin BTCUSD, +0.83%  last changed hands at $6,761.60, up 0.4% since Sunday 5 p.m. Eastern Time on the Kraken crypto exchange, but down 12.2% since Friday’s close.

Sunday’s fall took bitcoin to its lowest level since April 12, and in doing so, it breached an important trend line that was being closely observed by technical analysts. Furthermore, it traded below the psychological $7,000, one, which analyst Jani Ziedins said, if breached, would open up another wave of selling.


Read: Most major cryptocurrency exchanges lack sufficient background checks, research report says

The $7,000 support level had split analysts, with many bulls arguing it was acting as a support level and bitcoin would begin to claw back 2018 losses.

Unable to sustain rallies, the fall was coming

Despite the news of the hack triggering the selloff, one analyst believes the decline was imminent after a number of failed rallies.

“You have a combination of the move up simply running out of traction and not capturing further gains on the upside,” said David Reich, head of trading at Element Group. “Add to that the consistent supply that had been sold into the market in ether over the previous week between $605 and $610 and there were likely some weaker long positions in the market established.”

Altcoins and futures open well off Friday’s levels

Altcoins, or digital currencies other than bitcoin, were not spared, all losing more than 10% since Friday’s close. However, the selling has eased Monday, with most settling around Sunday’s levels.

Ether ETHUSD, +1.85% 1.6% at $531.00, Bitcoin Cash BCHUSD, -0.61% is down 1.6% at $929.90, Litecoin LTCUSD, +1.90% has gained 1.5% since Sunday, trading at $106.78 and Ripple’s XRP coin XRPUSD, +1.06% is unchanged at 58 cents.

Futures opened Monday with heavy losses. The Cboe June contract XBTM8, -11.44% is down 11.9% at $6,7400, while the CME June contract BTCM8, -11.89% has shed 12.2%, last trading at $6,720.

The total value of all cryptocurrencies fell below $300 billion for the first time in two months, according to CoinMarketCap.

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