China halts cryptocurrency trading platforms

China halts cryptocurrency trading platforms

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Chinese regulators ordered a halt to all virtual currency trading platforms in the country, acting to further rein in risks related to cryptocurrencies. The central government's office overseeing internet financial risks has ordered local authorities to shut down virtual exchanges trading digital currencies with the yuan, a source close to the office told Caixin. The order will affect major Bitcoin platforms such as OKCoin, Huobi and BTC China. "It means platforms facilitating trading between virtual currencies and legal tenders will not be allowed in China," the source said. But the source added that the crackdown targets unauthorized trading at virtual currency exchanges, rather than Bitcoin and the underlying blockchain technology. The regulatory move came after the central bank and other departments Monday imposed an immediate ban on fundraising using new blockchain-based currencies, also known as initial coin offerings (ICOs). The central bank said ICOs are unauthorized activities that may be rife with fraud.