China’s Bitcoin Trade Seen Continuing Despite Crackdown

The shutdown of bitcoin exchanges in China is testing the resilience of a booming area of domestic investment that has already survived previous crackdowns. Yet one likely effect of the moves by Chinese authorities is to push trading of virtual currencies offshore or to other alternative channels, said individuals involved in the bitcoin market.

The day after China’s oldest exchange, BTCC, said it would halt China trading, a smaller exchange, ViaBTC, said Friday that it also was going to close domestic trading operations at the end of the month. China’s two other biggest cryptocurrency exchanges, OKCoin and Huobi, also said they will halt trading by Oct. 31. The announcements came after Beijing’s recent ban on initial coin offerings.

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“Chinese traders who were already trading bitcoin will find other offshore venues on which to trade. This will obviously make it more difficult for newbies to get involved,” Mr. Hayes said. “But the government has just completed the best advertisement for bitcoin ever.”

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'People who are still interested will find ways to buy and trade bitcoin.'