For long-term Bitcoin investors, early December 2013 must seem like a long time ago.
Back then, the virtual currency was valued at around $1,150 per coin (£719 at today’s exchange rate).
Over the weekend, it tumbled to below $300 – the lowest point it has hit this year.
Virtual currency site Coindesk.com put the price at a low of $286 (£179) on Sunday, some 75% lower than its all-time peak price just 10 months ago.
It is now up again at over $300, but investors are still understandably worried.
Bitcoin commentators have suggested a wide range of theories about the causes of the price drop, from growing pains, to currency manipulation, to the impact of advanced trading tools, to a conspiracy theory that the US government is trying to destabilise it – and even that the CIA in fact created Bitcoin.
Whatever the causes, Bitcoin has been on a complete rollercoaster.
The chart below, from Coindesk.com, shows how the price of Bitcoin has changed over the past 18 months (this chart shows the price up to 4 October).
Still unsure about what Bitcoin is exactly and why everyone’s so excited about it?
This is my favourite video explaining how Bitcoin works and its potential and importance, from Vox.com.
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