Ether Drops Below $2K, Bitcoin Wilts as Agricultural Bank of China Reiterates Crypto Ban

Bitcoin, ether, and other cryptocurrencies are trading in the red after the Agricultural Bank of China reiterated its ban on crypto in a now-deleted statement.

  • Ether, the second-largest cryptocurrency by market value, fell to $1,977 during Monday’s early European hours, hitting the lowest level since May 23.

  • The token powering Ethereum’s blockchain is changing hands near $2,000 at press time, about a 10% drop on the day, according to CoinDesk 20 data.

  • Bitcoin is trading 7% down near $33,000, having reached lows close to $32,322.

  • Other top cryptocurrencies including XRP, cardano, and polkadot are nursing 5% to 10% losses.

  • In an announcement early Monday, the bank, one of China’s “big four,” cited People’s Bank of China guidance for a continuation of its crackdown on crypto transactions.

  • Accounts of customers dealing with crypto will be closed and transactions reported to relevant authorities, the bank said in a statement published in Chinese on its website and translated to English and shared across social media by many, including journalist Colin Wu.

  • The statement, which is no longer available on the website, bolstered concern of a regulatory crackdown, sending cryptocurrencies lower.

  • Crypto markets tanked last month on the back of environmental concerns related to crypto mining, China’s regulatory crackdown, and fears of an early scaling back of stimulus by the U.S. Federal Reserve.

  • China reiterated its long-held crypto ban last month, citing dangers associated with speculative trading. On Friday, the government intensified its crackdown on cryptocurrency mining by ordering the closure of 26 suspected cryptocurrency mining projects in Sichuan.

  • The Fed unexpectedly brought forward by the timing of the first interest-rate hike to 2023.

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