Bitcoin at roughly half its peak as crypto markets tumble

The digital currency drops below $34,000 as the US Federal Reserve is expected to raise interest rates.

Carrie Mihalcik Former Managing Editor / News
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Bitcoin continued its downward tumble on Monday morning, losing roughly half its value since its record high in November. The cryptocurrency fell below $34,000, a roughly 10% decline since Friday. 

It's not alone. Bitcoin is one of the many digital coins to have tumbled over the weekend, with the cryptocurrency market as a whole losing around $130 billion over the last 24 hours, according to CNBC. Ether, which held at around $4,000 for much of December, dropped to less than $2,100 on Monday. 

The market's downward slide comes as the US Federal Reserve has signaled it may soon tighten monetary policy and raise interest rates. As a result, there's been a broad market sell-off of cryptocurrencies and other riskier assets, including technology company stocks, according to The Wall Street Journal.

Last week, the Federal Reserve also released a long-awaited report that examines the potential benefits and risks of a central bank digital currency, or CBDC. While the Fed didn't take a stance on these digital dollars -- which unlike most cryptocurrencies are issued and regulated by a country's financial authority -- the report reflects the government's growing interest and concern over digital assets as cryptocurrencies gain popularity.