Bitcoin dropped sharply and suddenly on more news out of China

Bitcoin tumbled more than 4% in a matter of 15 minutes after it was reported that the People’s Bank of China was meeting with several local bitcoin exchanges on Wednesday to discuss a number of concerns, including money laundering, Bloomberg reports.

Bitcoin has had a wild start to 2017 after gaining 120% in 2016 to become the top performing currency for the second year in a row. The cryptocurrency raced to a gain of 20% in the opening days of the year as speculators, mainly from China, poured in.

However, bitcoin crashed 35% on fears that China would crack down on trading, bottoming near $750 a coin. Then, the cryptocurrency managed to grind higher despite news that China’s three largest exchanges said they would implement a flat fee of 0.2% on all transactions.

Currently, bitcoin trades down 1.5% at $1036 a coin. It’s up almost 9% for 2017.

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