Bitcoin surged about 13 percent on Friday, but was still on track for a big weekly loss during a tumultuous period of trading.
The cryptocurrency fell as low as $2,951.15 Friday, its lowest level since early August, before rebounding to $3,641.47 in late afternoon trading. For the week, however, bitcoin has lost about 14.7 percent of its value.
Bitcoin this week
Brian Kelly, CEO and founder of BKCM and a CNBC contributor, said sentiment around bitcoin was buoyed by Chinese regulators giving Huobi and OKcoin until October to close up shop.
That’s “because they are too big to unwind by September 30. The market is anticipating that these two exchanges will be made into a state-controlled duopoly and will be given licenses to remain open,” Kelly said.
Chinese regulators have been ramping up their crackdown on cryptocurrency exchanges. Chinese financial media outlet Yicai Global reported China plans to shut down all bitcoin exchanges by month’s end.
The report comes nearly two weeks after Chinese regulators banned fund raising through initial coin offerings. BTC China, another one of the biggest exchanges in the country, said Thursday it will stop all trading by Sept. 30.
But Sean Walsh, partner at Redwood City Ventures, told CNBC in an email that there is a “growing realization that global BTC exchanges have grown to such an extent that China now only represents about 10% of the total. China is meaningful, but it’s just nowhere close to ‘the whole market.'”
The cryptocurrency this week also caught flak from JPMorgan CEO Jamie Dimon, who called bitcoin a “fraud” and said, “It won’t end well. Someone is going to get killed.”
Despite its massive drop this week, however, bitcoin is still up more than 200 percent for the year. By comparison, the S&P 500 is up 11.7 percent in 2017.
Elsewhere, boxing star Floyd Mayweather tweeted out a picture of him using cryptocurrencies to shop in California late Thursday.
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