TOKYO: Bitcoin fell more than 5per cent on Friday, a day after topping US$40,000 for the first time.
The world's most popular digital currency slid to as low as US$36,618.36 on Bitstamp exchange, after reaching an all-time high of US$40,402.46 in the previous session.
Rival cryptocurrency ethereum sank more than 10per cent to as low as US$1,064.89.
Bitcoin has rallied more than 700per cent since a low in March. It topped US$30,000 for the first time on Jan. 2, after surpassing US$20,000 on Dec. 16.
Market participants had warned of a correction after the US$40,000 milestone was reached.
Increased demand from institutional, corporate, and more recently retail investors has powered bitcoin's surge, attracted by the prospect of quick gains in a world of ultra-low yields and negative interest rates.
JPMorgan strategists wrote on Jan. 5 that the digital currency has emerged as a rival to gold and could trade as high as US$146,000 if it becomes established as a safe-haven asset.
(Reporting by Kevin Buckland; Editing by Himani Sarkar)