Bitcoin value plunges below $US20,000 for first time since 2020

Bitcoin fell below the psychologically important threshold of $US20,000 ($29,000) on Saturday for the first time since late 2020, in a fresh sign that the sell-off in cryptocurrencies is deepening.

The price of the most-popular cryptocurrency had plunged by as much as 12 per cent to less than $US18,100 by late afternoon on the East Coast, according to the cryptocurrency news site CoinDesk.

It was November 2020 when bitcoin was last at that level, when it was on its way up to an all-time high of nearly $US69,000, according to CoinDesk.

Many in the industry had believed it would not fall under $US20,000.

Bitcoin has now lost more than 70 per cent of its value since reaching its peak.

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