Bitcoin, Ethereum Lead Cryptocurrency Market Lower as Trade Volumes Plunge to Six-Week Lows

Cryptocurrencies continued lower on Sunday after a stalled recovery limited gains to the low single digits, as weak trading volumes kept prices locked in a downtrend.

Crypto Market Price Update

Digital currency prices were down across the board Sunday, with bitcoin and Ethereum leading the declines.

Bitcoin bottomed at $7,243.90, its lowest since April 11. BTC values recovered at $7,348, having lost more than 2% over the past 24 hours. The world’s largest cryptocurrency has lost more than $17 billion in market cap compared with last week.

Ether prices bottomed at $562.23 over the weekend, giving back more than $200 from its most recent high three weeks ago. Ethereum is down nearly 20% in value over the past seven days. It was last seen trading around $569.63.

Bitcoin cash dipped below $1,000 after climbing back above the psychological threshold on Friday. At last check, it was valued at $995.88.

Stellar Lumens was down more than 5% to $0.276.

The crypto market cap is down more than $10 billion over the past 24 hours with total coin values hovering north of $326 billion. The market bottomed at $320 billion on Thursday.

Trading volumes have declined sharply over the past five days, with the market turning over just $13.1 billion on Sunday. That was the lowest turnover in six weeks.

The Bullish Case for Bitcoin

The latest market drama is once again forcing investors to think long and hard about their existing crypto holdings. Though the altcoin universe offers plenty of stellar projects, the bullish case for bitcoin remains stronger than ever, especially at current price levels. That’s because a growing number of use cases and increased institutional adoption make BTC an attractive long-term hold.

Though some have speculated that institutionalizing bitcoin is responsible for its marked decline since December, wider adoption is a net positive for the digital currency. Institutions today are exploring ways to offer bitcoin to their clients and developing new custody platforms that are designed to make holdings more secure.

Another interesting tidbit: bitcoin’s fees on Saturday briefly fell below rival bitcoin cash. Data from show that BTC’s transaction costs were  lower over a six-hour period, with the discount widening over a three-hour stretch.

By Sunday, the picture had reverted back to the norm with bitcoin transactions costing more than its rival.

Though it’s not entirely clear why bitcoin’s transaction costs declined so sharply on Saturday, the average tx fee for the world’s largest cryptocurrency is extremely erratic. The fee on bitcoin cash, on the other hand, is usually much more stable.

Disclaimer: The author owns bitcoin, Ethereum and other cryptocurrencies. He holds investment positions in the coins, but does not engage in short-term or day-trading.

Featured image courtesy of Shutterstock.

Chief Editor to and Contributor to, Sam Bourgi has spent the past nine years focused on economics, markets and cryptocurrencies. His work has been featured in and cited by some of the world's leading newscasts, including Barron's, CBOE and Forbes. Avid crypto watchers and those with a libertarian persuasion can follow him on twitter at @hsbourgi