Cryptocurrency prices steady with ripple bouncing back 30% after 'severe' sell-off

Cryptocurrency prices steady with ripple bouncing back 30% after 'severe' sell-off

Digital currency website Coinhills says South Korea is the third-biggest market for Bitcoin trades in the world, behind Japan and the USA, and with over a dozen cryptocurrency exchanges.

Bitcoin dropped below $10,000 today, and it's now worth just over half of its peak value.

While the volatility of the crypto market was relatively higher opening the year, the erroneous report emanating from South Korea about a possible regulatory crackdown created a ruckus in the worldwide crypto market.

The world's most popular cryptocurrency was trading at about $9,800 at 9 a.m. on Wednesday - down nearly 12 percent in a 24-hour period. The BPI managed to hit as low as $$9,714.02 on previous trading sessions; this is the first time that the prices managed to hit those lower levels ever since the surge they had last December.

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.

This morning, Bitcoin was down 17 per cent, Ethereum was down 21 per cent, Litecoin had dropped 20 per cent and Ripple a whopping 30 per cent. In particular, local and federal authorities should block user access to Chinese and foreign sites and mobile apps that allow cryptocurrency trading.

Major Korean banks earned 2.2 billion won (US$2 million) past year in commissions for providing virtual accounts to cryptocurrency investors, government data showed on January 18.

When the price of bitcoin fell in mid January a year ago, the cryptocurrency's price recovered to record levels. Other ministers within the government later softened their stance.

Bitcoin last fell below $10,000 on November 30. Investor fears of this trend of cracking down have already had dramatic effects on the value of these currencies.

The shift toward tighter regulation sparked a strong reaction from many South Koreans, thousands of whom signed a petition on the website of the presidential Blue House to stop a ban on cryptocurrency trading.