“This is confirmation that bitcoin works as a risk asset,” explains Noelle Acheson, head of market research at crypto lender Genesis Global Trading. Since the release of the December Fed minutes on Wednesday, Bitcoin has lost approximately 6%. Ether, the world’s second-largest cryptocurrency by market value, has lost approximately 9 percent. The declines were sparked by Federal Reserve minutes that revealed officials are considering a faster rate hike schedule this year. Holding unpredictable investments that yield little income becomes less appealing when interest rates climb, compared to government bonds.