Digital currencies slump on fears of China crackdown
Bitcoin fell below the $7,000 mark on Sunday for the first time since May.
The price of bitcoin BTCUSD, -6.13% was last around $6,850, according to Coindesk, after slumping about 24% over the past month. In June, the leading cryprocurrency topped $9,000 for the first time in more than a year, eventually topping out above $13,000.
The recent tumble is being attributed to China’s recent announcement that it will crack down on crypto trading. A statement by the People’s Bank of China on Friday warned it was increasing “supervision and control to combat virtual currency transactions.”
“Investors should be careful not to mix blockchain technology with virtual currency,” the central bank said, warning of the many risks of cryptocurrency trading.
There has also been speculation in recent months that China is preparing to launch a state-run digital currency, though the PBoC denied such a report earlier this year.
Bitcoin is not the only digital currency to suffer — Ethereum ETHUSD, -6.75% is down 22% over the past month and Ripple XRPUSD, -8.23% is off 25% over that span.
Still, the price of bitcoin is up 85% year to date, while Ethereum is up 8% and Ripple is down 37% in 2019.
As of Sunday night, bitcoin’s market cap was $126.3 billion, according to Coinmarketcap.com, while Ethereum was $15.5 billion and Ripple was $9.7 billion.