It’s been a painful few days if you’re a bitcoin investor. As of the time of this writing, bitcoin’s price has plummeted over 12% in 24 hours, according to CoinDesk. The cryptocurrency king is now worth just above $39,700 per coin. That’s down nearly $25,000 from its all-time high, which the coin hit just over a month ago.
So, what is driving bitcoin’s fall? It all began with Elon Musk’s tweet last week announcing Tesla would stop accepting bitcoin as a payment option for vehicle purchases. Musk cited the environmental impact bitcoin mining has on the world as a factor behind the move. Musk tweeted the news on May 12, and within 24 hours of that tweet, bitcoin plummeted 13%.
But the biggest and latest thing that has spooked bitcoins investors is the news from China yesterday. The Chinese government announced that it is banning payment companies and financial institutions “from providing services related to cryptocurrency transactions,” reports CNBC. Specifically, three Chinese regulatory bodies—the China Banking Association, the National Internet Finance Association of China, and the Payment & Clearing Association of China—said cryptocurrency registration, trading, clearing, and settlement are now verboten services that must not be offered.
Those regulators also jointly issued a statement warning investors not to speculatively trade cryptocurrencies, proclaiming cryptocurrency prices are easily manipulated and the digital tokens “are not supported by real value.” They stated: “Recently, cryptocurrency prices have skyrocketed and plummeted, and speculative trading of cryptocurrency has rebounded, seriously infringing on the safety of people’s property and disrupting the normal economic and financial order.”
So, should you buy, hold, or sell bitcoin after its epic plummet in the last week? That’s up to you and your tolerance for risk. The coin is down a staggering 38% from its all-time high just over a month ago. That being said, it’s important to note that even with that plunge, at the time of this writing, bitcoin is still up over 38% since the beginning of the year.