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Russia's attack on Ukraine has sent cryptocurrency prices tumbling

The beginning of the Russian invasion spawned trading that knocked almost 10% off the collective value of the global cryptocurrency market.
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Written by Michael Gariffo, Staff Writer on

As the world reeled from Russia's long-expected invasion of Ukraine, the reverberations caused by the event was causing a disastrous impact on the prices of Bitcoin, Ethereum, and nearly every other major cryptocurrency. 

As of mid-morning eastern time, Bitcoin was down nearly 8% over 24 hours, which actually represented a slight rebound from where it spent most of the overnight hours. Alongside it, Ethereum dropped as much as 10% in early morning trading, with many other coins following suit.

In fact, every cryptocurrency with an individual price above $3.00 was trending sharply downward by 10am ET. 

Coinmarketcap's tracker pegged the drop in value at nearly $160 billion across all cryptocurrencies or just under 10% of all tracked coins' collective value. 

Given the high-risk nature of cryptocurrency investments, it's hardly surprising that any conflict on this scale would create a sudden drop, especially one that involves Russia. 

Also: Ukraine invasion: How a digital cold war with Russia threatens the IT industry

According to Statista, Russia is currently the third most prolific country in terms of crypto mining, behind only the US and Kazakhstan. 

A series of riots and protests over fuel prices recently led to a days-long, government-mandated internet outage in Kazakhstan that had its own dramatic impact on cryptocurrency prices. While disruptive, this short-term downtime involved nowhere near the potential loss of life and the ongoing Russian conflict's financial and commercial sanctions. 

A European Union meeting scheduled for later in the day is widely expected to produce more sanctions against Russia, while the US also intends to deepen its financial and commercial penalties against the aggressor in this situation. The result will assuredly further muddy the already chaotic international cryptocurrency trade

Although some signs in the later morning indicated several cryptocurrencies could already be rebounding, the continued unrest is likely to make the already tumultuous crypto market of recent months even less predictable. 

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