Today, Bitcoin’s price fell 8% following the “breaking” (read, weeks-old) news that China’s People’s Bank of China had declared all cryptocurrency transactions illegal.
Let’s now take a look back at 12 years worth of FUD from China and see if there are any trends.
China banned virtual currencies for the first time since 2009
1: Before the 2017 ICO boom, Chinese regulators weren’t crypto-friendly. In 2009, when cryptocurrencies were still very young (i.e. 2009: The Ministry of Culture and Ministry of Commerce of China banned the use of virtual currency for real-world goods trading. Although it did not directly target Bitcoin (BTC), this move seems to have set the precedent for over a decade of anticrypto regulations.
2013 saw the first Bitcoin-specific ban
2: The People’s Bank of China (PBoC) stopped Chinese financial institutions from processing BTC transactions in 2013. This news caused the price of BTC below $1,000, at a time when BTC China (or BTCC) was the largest cryptocurrency exchange by volume.
Within a matter of weeks, the asset was back to its original form.
2014 was plagued by fake ban threats
2014 proved that fake reports by PBoC regulators can sometimes be just as effective than real ones.
3: A fake news article published on Sina Weibo’s March website claimed that China’s central bank had planned to block all Bitcoin transactions within the country, and this was to be done in less than a month. Although the report was bogus, it did not stop Bitcoin’s price rising.
4: Around the same time, FXBTC, a Chinese-based cryptocurrency exchange, announced that it would shut down its doors due to regulatory threats. Combination of these two events may have contributed to Bitcoin’s plunge from $709 down to as low $346.
Although the bloody affair was admittedly brutal, the price started to recover quickly and was at the end of May back above $600
In 2016, prices briefly fell due to a Chinese exchange hack
5: Although not directly controlled in China, Bitfinex, a major crypto exchange based in Hong Kong was the victim to one of the biggest hacks of August 2016. Around 119,756 BTC was stolen by hackers. This amount is more than $5 billion. Some of these funds are still being traced to this day. The news of the hacking major exchange caused the BTC price drop to more than 10% in just two days.
However, prices rose to pre-hack levels by September.
China lifted two crypto-related bans in one month in 2017.
6 & 7: China’s government banned exchanges from serving users within its country in September. The PBoC also announced that Chinese citizens wouldn’t be permitted to fund initial coin offerings.
Bitcoin’s price change from $4,000 to an all-time high of around $20,000. took three months.
8 & 9 : The cryptocurrency was headed towards one of its largest bull runs ever. BTCC announced that it would be closing down under the government ban (it’s still operational), and the PBoC deputy Governor claimed that “Bitcoin’s body” would float downstream one day.
By this time, Crypto was well on its way to recovery and had only minor dips.
According to media reports, there was a brief crypto crisis of faith in 2018.
10: Reports circulated in January 2018 that Chinese nationals might have caused major cryptocurrency price crashes.
11: Many believed that the decline was caused by Chinese media reports that claimed China was clamping down on crypto mining. Bitcoin’s price had fallen more than 65% by mid-February to $6,852.
However, this didn’t last very long; by the end the month, the price had risen to more than $11,000
In 2019, FUD continued to rage
12: Bitcoin’s price fell slightly in April 2019, as a draft of the China’s National Development and Reform Commission showed that the government was looking at banning mining in China… again.
13: The PBoC announced that tcrypto trading would be “disposed off immediately” upon discovering it.
Even though there was a short price drop, new all-time highs are soon in sight.
China is allegedly responsible for 2020’s “crypto bloodbath”
14: The “crypto bloodbath” of March 2020, in which almost all major tokens fell at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic was believed to be largely due to Chinese miners selling their holdings.
Related: Bitcoin price drops to $32.5K due to ‘consistently new China FUD
15: Hong Kong’s government has announced plans to ban retail cryptocurrency trading in its effort to combat money laundering.
The COVID’s first year ended with Bitcoin surpassing the $20,000 mark for the first three years. It also reached an all-time high at more than $30,000 just before 2020.
FUD is here to stay
16: In May 2021, the China Banking Association and the National Internet Finance Association of China issued a warning about investing in cryptocurrency due to the possible risks.
17: In the following month, the PBoC directed Chinese banks and mobile payment services providers to stop providing banking and settlement services for clients involved in crypto-related transactions.
18: This brings us to today when the PBoC once again declares that all cryptocurrency transactions in China illegal.
The total number times China FUD has failed crypto to kill it: 18
Today’s message from PBoC includes 11 messages directly coming from Chinese and Hong Kong regulators enforcing, hinting at enforcing a crypto ban, exchanges or mining ban, 7 major instances of fake news stories out of China influencing crypto markets, as well as a few other incidents such hacks or decisions made by crypto businesses in China, which led to dips. Since 2009, China has “banned or caused FUD in crypto space on more 18 occasions.
Cointelegraph Markets Pro data shows that Bitcoin’s price fell by more than 5% over the past 24 hours but is now back above $43,000 as of the time of publication.
Jeffrey Albus contributed research and editorial content to this story.