Bitcoin Continues to Slide as Critics Turn Up the Volume

May 08, 2018 - Cryptocurrencies continued to slide on Tuesday as a wave of high profile criticism seemed to dampen sentiment for the digital asset.

Bitcoin lost 2.73% in the last 24 hours to reach $9,109.10 on the Bitfinex exchange by 8:38AM ET (12:38GMT). The largest crypto by market capitalization has been trading with losses all week after an attack at the $10,000 level last Saturday petered out at $9,990.

The downward move this week coincided with a harsh critique from billionaire investor Warren Buffett who denied Bitcoin was an investment, insisting it was pure speculation.

Buffett, who has long railed against the digital coin assets, followed up the Berkshire Hathaway (NYSE:BRKa) annual meeting over the weekend with an interview with CNBC.

“When you're buying nonproductive assets, all you're counting on is the next person is going to pay you more because they're even more excited about another next person coming along,” he insisted.

He followed up Monday in the CNBC interview, claiming that Bitcoin was “probably rat poison squared”.

Bill Gates echoed that sentiment in the CNBC interview, calling it a “pure ‘greater fool theory’ type of investment”.

“I would short it if there was an easy way to do it,” Gates added.

DataTrek Research cofounder Nick Colas added more fuel to fire late Monday as he advised against investing in Bitcoin.

Colas, considered to be the first Wall Street analyst to cover the asset, told CNBC that he was getting a lot of questions from clients about how Bitcoin had crashed from nearly $20,000 and they were wondering if now was the time to buy.

“The short answer is no,” Colas claimed, citing lackluster fundamentals, a decline in interest (as shown by Google search trends and wallet growth) and wild price swings that he considers indicate anything but a healthy sign of a stable asset class.

In other Bitcoin news, the San Francisco Federal Reserve Bank blamed the severe correction from all-time highs on the introduction of Bitcoin futures.

“The launch of bitcoin futures allowed pessimists to enter the market, which contributed to the reversal of the bitcoin price dynamics,” the researchers said in a report.

“The rapid run-up and subsequent fall in the price after the introduction of futures does not appear to be a coincidence,” they insisted. “Rather, it is consistent with trading behavior that typically accompanies the introduction of futures markets for an asset.”

In other cryptocurrency trading, Ethereum fell 0.5% to $727.45 in the last 24 hours, Ripple traded down 2.9% to $0.79834, while Bitcoin Cash, product of the Bitcoin fork and the fourth largest cryptocurrency by market capitalization, slid 4.3% to $1,564.60.