Cryptocurrency prices bounced off 1-1/2 month lows on Tuesday as a heavy selloff overnight linked to concerns about a possible loan default by property developer China Evergrande eased slightly, but investors braced for more volatility.
Bitcoin, the biggest and the best known cryptocurrency, traded around $43,000, recovering from a fall to $40,192 earlier in the session. It hit a four-month high of $52,000 on Sept 6.
Smaller rival ether, the coin linked to the Ethereum blockchain, rose 1% to $3,012 after falling below $3,000 for the first time since early August.
Global markets started the week on a turbulent note after fears that Evergrande's troubles could lead to a fallout for the Chinese and global economies prompted a selloff in riskier assets.
"We can't take a very positive view just as yet until we get through the next few days," said Matthew Dibb, chief operating officer at crypto index fund provider Singapore-based Stack Funds.
"This is purely sentiment driven right now, and it's actually been off very low liquidity," he said, adding that it would be better to wait on the sidelines as crypto markets will continue to be affected by the contagion.
The drop in cryptocurrencies comes at a time when institutional interest in the space has risen and made it more mainstream, with many investment banks taking a more bullish stance.
(Reporting by Anushka Trivedi in Bengaluru; editing by Richard Pullin) ((Anushka.Trivedi@thomsonreuters.com; +918061823241;))