Bitstamp, the cryptocurrency industry’s oldest active exchange, has recently seen a bot “go wild” on it, causing massive price swings on several trading pairs and flash crashing litecoin (LTC) on the LTC/EUR pair.
According to Nejc Kodrič, the libertarian entrepreneur who co-founded the cryptocurrency exchange and currently serves as its CEO, the bot that went “wild” belongs to one of the exchange’s clients.
As various cryptocurrency enthusiasts reported on social media, Bitstamp saw highly unusual action earlier today, October 7. CryptoCompare data shows that on the BTC/EUR pair the exchange saw a bot sell €6 million ($6.9 million) worth of BTC in about 15 minutes, sending the flagship cryptocurrency’s price to about €5,000 ($5,760).
It then seemingly tried to make things right, and bought €6 million worth of BTC in about 5 minutes, helping the cryptocurrency skyrocket to €6,600 ($7,620). A new sale sent BTC to about €5,700 ($6,570) – its current price.
Other cryptocurrencies were also affected. Ethereum saw buy orders send its price to about €235 ($270), and sell orders subsequently crashed it to a €123 ($141) low, before trying to send it back up. After a brief struggle, ETH’s price went back to its €195 ($224) normal.
The bot, at about the same time, also sent XRP to a €0.65 ($0.75) high, before crashing it back down to its current €0.40 ($0.4). Notably, litecoin seemingly didn’t see the bot issue buy orders, but only dump it.
Per CryptoCompare data, the cryptocurrency dipped to a €1.12 ($1.29) low, before quickly recovering to its current €50 ($57) price tag. While the whole ordeal was over in about five minutes, it was enough to see social media users consider various possibilities, ranging from whales cashing out to market manipulation.
Bitstamp’s trading volume, as CryptoGlobe covered, has been plummeting in the last few months, along with that of Kraken and Coinbase. According to a report published by cryptoasset research firm Diar, this may be because these exchanges haven’t listed the controversial asset USDT.