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Bitcoin roars back to life

The cryptocurrency market made a swift comeback from the turbulence last week triggered by China’s latest crackdown volley, with the likes of bitcoin and ether recouping most of their losses on Monday.

Bitcoin rallied to about US$44 000 as of 1.35pm in Hong Kong, near the level when the People’s Bank of China on Friday announced its latest step in reining in crypto. Ether broke above last week’s level at $3 100.

“Over the weekend sessions, bitcoin has shown some resilience and has now recovered the majority of those losses,” said Jeffrey Halley, senior market analyst at Oanda, in a note Monday. “It may well be that China’s previously announced crackdowns had already been built into prices.”

Crypto markets were roiled on Friday when the PBOC issued a newly restrictive ban on transactions and mining, in conjunction with several other state agencies. That step signalled that policies in China may be moving toward a more serious and coordinated level. At the same time, previous statements from Beijing about bans haven’t killed crypto entirely in the country, so some traders were more sanguine about the effect.

One area not faring so well: stocks or tokens with significant Chinese crypto reliance. Hong Kong-listed Huobi Technology Holdings, an exchange with a significant mainland presence, dropped as much as 33%. The Huobi Token was off about 10% in the past 24 hours, according to CoinGecko pricing.

Meanwhile, Fujian-based software firm Meitu fell as much as 6.1%, while GRG Banking Equipment dropped up to 2.4%. Those falls come after crypto-linked stocks fell in other regions — like MicroStrategy, which declined as much as 6.7% on Friday in the US. — Bloomberg