The world’s most iconic crypto fell around £1,600 from £25,961 at 6.30am to £24,353 at 1.30pm. It comes as Xi Jinping’s regime intensifies its crackdown on crypto.
Part of this has involved targeting “crypto mines” in the country which use computational puzzle-solving to create new units of the virtual currency.
News of the measures sent Bitcoin tumbling from a high of almost £47,000 as wary investors shunned the currency.
Much of the power-hungry mining process takes place in Sichuan – a province in south-west China.
On Friday Chinese media reported that the 26 largest local mines had been ordered to stop operating while an investigation is carried out.
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The news will heap further pressure on Bitcoin and the crypto industry as a whole as governments across the planet begin looking at creating more transparency and financial oversight.
Investors may also have been worried after a video of employees at one large mine shutting off their computers’ servers went viral.
The fall comes just a week after Bitcoin was given an unexpected boost by Tesla founder Elon Musk.
Its value jumped around five percent last Sunday after he tweeted that his company still had large holdings of the crypto.
Responding to an article accusing him of a “bitcoin pump and dump”, he replied: “When there’s confirmation of reasonable (~50 percent) clean energy usage by miners with positive future trend, Tesla will resume allowing bitcoin transactions.
“This is inaccurate. Tesla only sold 10 percent of holdings to confirm BTC could be liquidated easily without moving market.”
His tweets were posted just a month after he sent the price of crypto tumbling by again appearing to insult its green credentials.
Bitcoin and cryptocurrency markets plummeted by around £217 billion after he tweeted: “Cryptocurrency is a good idea on many levels and we believe it has a promising future, but this cannot come at great cost to the environment.”
Before the latest crackdown, China accounted for up to 75 percent of the world’s mining, according to pre-crackdown estimates.