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Crypto veterans know this feeling: the price of Bitcoin just almost halved. This has happened several times before. In 2018, 2019 and 2020 for just a few recent examples.

This time the fall is quite spectacular, from more than $80,000 to about $45,000 in just two months (before rebounding slightly to be down about a third). The second-leading cryptocurrency, Ethereum, has suffered a similar retreat. It collapsed from more than $5000 to about $2700 in just a month.

The widespread retreat in crypto has many causes, including an FBI sting that saw a Bitcoin ransom seized by authorities. If crypto isn’t safe for criminals, does demand for it collapse?

The normalisation of markets is another reason, with bond yields rising and more traditional assets finally offering decent returns.

A third possible cause is the increasing menagerie of “meme stocks” — Game Stop, AMC and all the rest, distracting young retail investors who might once have seen Bitcoin as the only way to undermine the mainstream financial system.

Can Bitcoin recover and fulfil its destiny as a mainstream investment? Or will it continue to slide? The crypto veterans will hold on regardless.