Ethereum “Flash Crash” Prompts Outrage

The price of ethereum crashed as low as 10 cents from around $319 in about a second on the GDAX cryptocurrency exchange on Wednesday, which is being blamed on a “multimillion dollar market sell” order.

Ethereum is an alternative digital currency to bitcoin and had been trading as high as $352 on Wednesday.

Adam White, the vice president of GDAX which is run by U.S. firm Coinbase, posted on the exchange’s blog, outlining what took place at around 12:30 p.m. PT on Wednesday. According to White, the multimillion dollar market sell order resulted in a number of orders being filled from $317.81 to $224.48.

As the price continued to fall, another 800 stop loss orders and margin funding liquidations caused ethereum to trade as low as 10 cents.

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Craig Erlam

Craig Erlam

Senior Currency Analyst at OANDA
Based in London, England, Craig Erlam joined OANDA in 2015 as a Market Analyst. With more than five years' experience as a financial market analyst and trader, he focuses on both fundamental and technical analysis while conducting macroeconomic commentary. He has been published by The Financial Times, Reuters, the Wall Street Journal and The Telegraph, and he also appears regularly as a guest commentator on networks including Sky News, Bloomberg, CNBC and BBC. Craig holds a full membership to the Society of Technical Analysts and he is recognized as a Certified Financial Technician by the International Federation of Technical Analysts.