A visual representation of the Bitcoin cryptocurrency on November 20, 2018 in London, England.
Jordan Mansfield | Getty Images
The bitcoin sale continued on Sunday after a week of roller-coaster trading as Chinese and US authorities scramble to strengthen cryptocurrency regulation and tax compliance.
Bitcoin fell about 16% to $ 31,772.43 at 12:27 p.m. ET, according to data from Coin Metrics.
As of Friday afternoon, the world’s largest cryptocurrency was trading at $ 35,891.20.
The recent sell-off of Bitcoin is a major reversal for the cryptocurrency, which seemed to be gaining traction among the big Wall Street banks and publicly traded companies. This month, however, bitcoin has been hit by a series of negative headlines from major influencers and regulators.
Tesla CEO Elon Musk, who helped fuel bullish sentiment when his company bought $ 1.5 billion worth of bitcoin, struck a blow earlier this month by announcing the automaker had suspended vehicle purchases using cryptocurrency for environmental reasons.
Musk then sent mixed messages about his bitcoin stance, hinting in a tweet that Tesla may have sold his holdings, only to later clarify that he hadn’t.
“The asset class continues to be very volatile, with the potential for large price movements resulting from a single tweet or public comment,” CIBC analyst Stephanie Price said in a note Thursday.
A report from JPMorgan showed that large institutional investors were dumping bitcoin in favor of gold. The news raised questions about the institutional support for the cryptocurrency.
Cryptocurrencies continued to fall as Chinese authorities called for tighter regulations on mining and trading in cryptocurrencies, and the US Treasury announced it would demand tighter crypto compliance with the IRS .
Bitcoin plunged more than 30% at one point on Wednesday to nearly $ 30,000, its lowest price since late January, according to Coin Metrics. The cryptocurrency peaked in April at nearly $ 65,000.
“Even with this week’s massive sell-off, cryptocurrencies have seen an incredible run over the past year,” Price said.
Bitcoin rose 268% last year, according to Coinbase. Ether, the second largest cryptocurrency, rose more than 840%.
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– CNBC’s Michael Bloom contributed reporting.