The price of bitcoin dropped below $9,000 from an all-time high of about $11,000 before rebounding within hours after numerous exchanges and trading platforms crashed on Wednesday.
The world’s most popular digital currency tanked nearly 18 percent, according to CoinDesk. Bitcoin then managed to recover to the $10,000 level by 20:32 GMT.
The price dropped as two of the largest digital exchanges, Coinbase and Gemini, crashed on Wednesday morning, unable to keep up with the heavy trading volume. Many users were locked out of buying and selling cryptocurrencies. The collapse followed a surge to above $11,000 in early trading.
Some users reportedly couldn’t log into their accounts on GDAX, Coinbase's professional trading platform, and Bitstamp, a bitcoin exchange based in Luxembourg.
Coinbase experienced “all-time-high traffic” early Wednesday, causing some users to experience slowness, according to Dave Farmer, the director of business operations at the exchange service.
We are performing scheduled maintenance on Thurs 30 November at 11pm PT. Coinbase services will be offline for 1 hour. This will significantly increase the amount of traffic we can handle, and help to prevent slow performance and login issues during large traffic surges.
— Coinbase (@coinbase) November 30, 2017
Coinbase, which says it has exchanged over $50 billion in virtual currencies since it started in 2012, reportedly provides services to more than 12 million users.
The Gemini digital asset exchange, launched by the Winklevoss twins in 2015, has reported that its system was under maintenance.
Bitcoin has experienced a meteoric rise since its launch in 2009. The digital currency started the year below $1,000 and was trading at $10,399 at 9:14 GMT on Thursday.