Chinese Government Cracks Down on Cryptocurrency Trading

Randolph Lopez
January 19, 2018

Bitcoin, the dominant digital currency, extended a slump today following a recent surge to trade below Dollars 10,000 for the first time since the start of December. Tokyo-based economist Makoto Sakuma said, "I would say the strong rally in bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies we saw a year ago is over".

The last time bitcoin fell below the $10,000 mark was November 30.

The collective market capitalization of all cryptocurrencies has dropped by more than $200 billion since Tuesday.

Korean Finance Minister Kim Dong-yeon said Tuesday that banning trading in digital currencies was "a live option".

"The government is considering both shutting down all local virtual currency exchanges or just the ones who have been violating the law", said Choi Jong-ku. Such a ban would require a majority vote from the country's National Assembly, which the Evening Standard reports could take months or possibly years.

According to analysts, the fall of bitcoin is explained in particular by the indications of a hardening of the authorities with regard to crypto-currencies, in particular in South Korea and in China.

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The cryptocurrency market is notoriously volatile but events in South Korea appear to have a disproportionate effect on trading.

While bitcoin has declined by 12.65 per cent since yesterday, ethereum is down 17.45 per cent and Ripple XRP is down 21.05 per cent, at the time of publication.

An estate agent has warned about the pitfalls of permitting house sale transactions in the cryptocurrency Bitcoin, as its value tumbled. It's also put blockchain - the software technology enabling Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies - on a trajectory of its own. This time is likely no different, but the reasons behind it could point to more significant, long-term changes in cryptocurrency prices and trading in 2018. Last the cryptocurrency saw meteoric rise, going from around 800 dollars in January of 2017 to almost $20,000 in December.

Amid the South Korean government drawing up measures to regulate the recent craze for cryptocurrency, an anonymous post online has sparked heated debate.

But the proposed move by South Korea would go even further, meaning an outright ban rather than restricted access, and is reportedly inspired by a desire to target "speculative frenzy and crime" associated with cryptocurrencies.

Other reports by GlobalViralNews

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