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Bitcoin slides close to $20,000 after the Federal Reserve makes biggest rate hike since 1994

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  • The Federal Reserve announced a 75-basis-point hike Wednesday, and bitcoin slipped on the news. 
  • Bitcoin hovered around $20,591 following the Fed hike, though early Wednesday it hit $20,133.
  • The crypto bear market has worsened this week, as it has fallen roughly 29% over the last five days.

Bitcoin slipped closer to $20,000 Wednesday after the Federal Reserve announced a 75-basis-point interest rate hike — the central bank’s biggest increase since 1994.

At one point immediately after the Fed’s announcement, bitcoin hit $20,378, then pared losses. But earlier Wednesday, bitcoin slid to $20,133. 

At 2:15 p.m. ET, bitcoin traded roughly at $20,591, down 6.91% for the day. The world’s largest cryptocurrency by market cap has fallen roughly 29% over the last five days, and 56% year to date.

As it extends its months-long slide, the digital asset is falling toward a price not seen since 2020, reflecting an overall sell-off in the crypto market. 

Earlier this week, crypto lender Celsius halted withdrawals, citing “extreme market conditions,” and now the firm has hired lawyers to help it restructure its finances, the Wall Street Journal reported Wednesday.  

Celsius’s customers have pulled more than $2.5 billion in assets this year amid the crypto bear market, according to the Financial Times. 

Meanwhile, “Shark Tank” investor Kevin O’Leary said the crypto market won’t hit bottom until there’s a panic. “In the crypto world, we need someone to go to zero,” O’Leary told CoinDesk.

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