Bitcoin prices have fallen a little over 2.5% (about $12) in the last 24 hours, seemingly due to a false report that Chinese authorities were on the verge of blocking all bitcoin transactions starting April 15. The claim, published on China’s equivalent of Twitter, Sina Weibo, has since been retracted.
According to a translation published by CoinDesk, the original post read:
It is rumored that on March 18th the PBOC had issued a notice calling for all bitcoin transactions to be halted by April 15th. As of today the PBOC has not confirmed nor denied the statement.”
Representatives of the People’s Bank of China were quick to respond to the post, clarifying the central bank’s position.
Regarding the PBOC statement issued on 3/18 requesting all bitcoin transactions to be halted before 4/15, those close to the regulatory body told Sina Finance on Friday, the PBOC did issue a document, but it was not to ban/halt bitcoin transactions, instead to strengthen regulatory oversight of bitcoin transactions, circulation and redemptions.”
In the time between the start of the rumor and the clarification, the value of bitcoin on Chinese exchange BTC China fell from $592.99 to $546.24. The price has recovered somewhat today, hovering around $580 on most major exchanges.