Gold prices have tanked during the Monday morning Asian trading session, compounding losses accumulated over the past week.

On Monday, the price of gold quickly fell to its lowest level since March as a flash crash drove prices below $1,700 per ounce.

According to TradingView, the price of the precious yellow metal plunged to $1,690/oz during Asian trading hours on Monday. The price of gold has since posted a minor recovery, last changing hands for $1,742/oz at the time of writing.

Gold is currently down by 4% over the past seven weeks and 8.7% since trading above $1,900/oz at the end of May. The precious metal has retreated 8% in 2021 so far, and it is currently down 14.6% from its August 2020 all-time high of just below $2,040.

Forex trader and chart guru Peter Brandt attributed the crash to wholesale liquidations, stating, “This has all the finger prints of a bank/brokerage house conducting forced liquidation upon a huge leverage speculator.”

He noted that the leverage ratio on the Chicago Mercantile Exchange’s gold markets is roughly 15-to-1, suggesting heavily leveraged traders are driving price action for gold.

Analysts at London trading firm City Index similarly blamed Monday morning’s crash to “stop-loss related selling in very thin market conditions.”

However, United States unemployment figures have also been a catalyst for the decline in commodity prices last week. The unemployment rate dropped more than expected to 5.4% from 5.9%, a new low of the pandemic era, according to a Bureau of Labor Statistics report published Friday. Along with the labor market and economy, the broader U.S. economy is continuing to heal. City Index concluded:

“The better jobs data sent the US dollar and US bond yields higher, never a good formula for commodities.”

With one Bitcoin (BTC) currently worth 25 ounces of gold, Bitcoin is down 28.5% from its all-time high against gold — with a single BTC having been worth 35 ounces of gold during Bitcoin’s all-time price high of nearly $65,000 in mid-April. However, 1 Bitcoin was worth 15.5 ounces of gold at the start of 2021.

BTC price in gold ounces:

At the time of writing, BTC had slumped 2% over the past 24 hours to trade at $43,667, according to CoinGecko.