Cryptocurrency mining operators, including Huobi Mall and BTC.TOP, are suspending their China operations after Beijing stepped up its efforts to crack down on Bitcoin mining and trading, sending the digital currency tumbling.
A State Council committee led by Vice Premier Liu He announced the efforts late on Friday – the first time the council has targeted virtual currency mining, a big business in China that accounts for as much as 70 percent of the world’s crypto supply.
Crypto miners use increasingly powerful, specially-designed computer equipment, or rigs, to verify virtual coin transactions in a process that produces newly minted cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin.
Bitcoin took a hammering after the latest Chinese move and is now down nearly 50 percent from its all-time high. It shed as much as 17 percent on Sunday, before paring some losses and was last trading steady in Asia.
Investor protection and prevention of money laundering are particular concerns of governments and financial regulators who are grappling with whether and how they should regulate the cryptocurrency industry.
US Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell turned up the heat on cryptocurrencies last week, saying on Thursday that they pose risks to financial stability and indicating that greater regulation may be warranted. Here