"We were waiting for a break," said Mathieu Greenspan, a senior analyst at the eToro market. "When you have a price move so you've constantly had a lot of stop-loss orders building on – and now you see that they are being liquidated."
Eric XRP of Ripper and Etherum, the second and third largest coins, dropped as much as 14 and 16 percent before reducing losses in US trading hours.
Tuesday's collapse coincided with wider falls in financial markets. European stocks fell as bad retail results and weakness in Apple Inc. dragged Wall Street.
This year, Bitcoin has climbed over 75 percent of the $ 20,000 peak, touched in December, when retail investors clashed in one of the biggest bubbles in history.
Merchants and market makers blamed the bitkoin slide for selling heavily on stock markets in Asia, such as Hong Kong-based Oaks and Bitmeks. A few exchanges in the West are giving a backoff to traders, making Asian places popular with speculators.
"The presence of leverage makes daily traders attracted to the Asian markets," said Michael Moro, CEO of Genesis Global Trading in New York, one of the largest trading benches abroad.
"People who risk 100X type of support, it's really difficult to think about how an investment – it's a casino-mentality."
Others blame the fears that last week a "heavy fork" in a crash cache, where software upgrades split the fourth-largest coin into two separate currencies, could destabilize the other.
The price of a bitkite tends to be sensitive to debates about how its core network develops. Last year the suspension of a hard fork planned by major developers and investors proved to be the main catalyst for its remarkable growth.
Mainstream investors remain without a battle, with concerns about weak regulatory oversight and underdeveloped market infrastructure, which consists of frequent price changes.
This lack of engagement saw the bitoku struggle to live until its recovery as something that would revolutionize world financing. Its use as a currency for payment has decreased this year.
At the same time, the dive value of the dumbbell has calmed the fears of regulators and central bankers that someday might pose a risk to financial stability.
According to Coinmarketcap.com, the total value of the encryption is now about $ 154 billion, down from $ 800 billion in January.
Cryptocurrency advocates say bitcoin is still young and price volatility can be expected. Many predict the need for virtual currencies that run out of mainstream banking and will overcome any short-term price falls.
By late afternoon, XRP and ether traded about $ 0.45 and $ US142, respectively, for exchanges with Luxemburg-based Bitambam.
"The euphoria has died and prices are consolidating with lower lows and lower elevations," said Fawad Razakzad, an analyst at Forex.com. "Many people lost interest."