China orders bitcoin exchanges to close
BEIJING — Regulators have ordered Chinese bitcoin exchanges to close, two business newspapers reported Thursday, after uncertainty about the digital currency’s future in China caused its price to plunge. Regulators in Shanghai, the country’s financial centre, gave verbal instructions to exchange operators to shut down, China Business News and 21st Century Economic Report said on their websites. Bitcoin’s value tumbled 15 per cent Thursday to about $3,300. China’s central bank has yet to respond to questions about bitcoin’s future in the country but earlier warned it was traded without regulatory oversight and might be linked to fraud. The bank banned initial offerings of new digital currencies last week. Bitcoin is created and exchanged without the involvement of banks or governments. Transactions allow anonymity, which has made bitcoin popular with people who want to conceal their activity.