Bitcoin drops below $11,000, pulls back from key breakthrough level

Bitcoin drifted further away from the $12,000 mark on Tuesday, as a popular cryptocurrency exchange faced allegations of mishandling the launch of a new asset on its platform.

After a gradual fall Tuesday morning, Bitcoin

BTCUSD, -5.21%

 slumped 4.5% to $10,918.35 after hitting a high of $11,432.98 so far on the day, according to CoinDesk. The No. 1 digital currency was well off a two-week high of $11,660.24 reached on Monday, as it continues to face resistance at the $12,000 level.

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Traders were assessing the news that Coinbase, a popular cryptocurrency exchange, has been slapped with two class-action lawsuits. One suit accuses the exchange’s employees of unfairly profiting from a December listing of Bitcoin cash.

Despite the rejection of $11,500, Bitcoin remains in the wider $9,000 – $12,000 range, and closer to the top. “I think $11,500 seems like the general market resistance, but either way the overall bull market is in the up-trend phase,” said Charles Hayter, co-founder of CryptoCompare.

He added Tuesday’s slide was “nothing to drastic.”

Bitcoin cash was down 4.2% on Tuesday at $1,213.27, well off a peak above $4,000 seen on Dec. 20, around the time that listing was announced.

On Monday, Ripple surged more than 7% amid speculation that it could be listing on Coinbase. Those gains faded after the exchange said it had no plans to add additional assets currently. Ripple moved down 0.6% to 98 cents on Tuesday.

Read: The chance of hacking a Bitcoin wallet is as likely as winning Powerball—9 times in a row

Among other cryptocurrencies, Ether was trading at $832.15, down 2.6%, while Litecoin was down 4.5% at $201.67.

Bitcoin futures markets opened in the red, with the Cboe Global Markets March contract

XBTH8, -5.62%

 off 5.8% to $10,900, while the CME Group Inc. March contract

BTCH8, -5.77%

 was down 6% at $10,910.

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