Bitcoin Hits 2018 Low as Concerns Mount on Regulation, Viability

February 1, 2018

London (Feb 1)  Bitcoin slumped to its low for the year after seeing more than $44 billion in market value lost during January amid mounting concerns of increased regulation and the viability of the cryptocurrency.

After reaching a record high of $19,511 on Dec. 18, Bitcoin has lost more half its value as the digital token has been weighed down by expectations of more government oversight globally, fears of price manipulation, the susceptibility of exchanges to hacking and lingering concern that it’s all just an asset bubble. Facebook announced a ban on cryptocurrency ads this week.

Bitcoin declined as much as 11 percent today to $8,915, the lowest since November, in part on concern India may crack down on cryptocurrencies. That follows a spate of recent negative headlines, including a $500 million heist from a Japanese cryptocurrency exchange.

"News about India potentially cracking down on cryptocurrencies added to an already bad week in terms of headlines," said Andrew Se, cryptocurrency trader and co-founder of research website “We’re still correcting as the rally had gone too far."

Bitcoin’s dizzying 1,400 percent ascent last year, which created $200 billion in new wealth for investors, has made its 30 percent fall in January all the more painful. The $44.2 billion in market value lost last month is by far a record for the digital currency, whose entire market cap hadn’t come close to that amount until 2017, according to price data from

India’s Finance Minister Arun Jaitley told lawmakers in New Delhi on Thursday the country doesn’t consider cryptocurrencies legal tender “and will take all measures to eliminate use of these crypto-assets in financing illegitimate activities or as part of the payment system,” while it will explore the use of blockchain technology.

While major U.S. exchanges launched Bitcoin futures contracts in December, there has been a push back elsewhere. South Korean banned anonymous trades and is considering a ban on exchanges, a move China already took last year.


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