Bitcoin in China
A dream dispelled
Chinese regulators make life hard for crypto-currencies
NOT so long ago, China looked to be the promised land for crypto-currencies. Bitcoin and its rivals were traded freely and online exchanges proliferated. On one estimate, China accounted for more than half of the world's trade in Bitcoin last year. Near the end of last year, when its price was above $1,000, more than 100,000 coins were being traded daily on BTC China, a local exchange.
Alas, those heady days are gone. Prices have plunged below $500 of late and hardly 2,000 coins are now traded daily on BTC China. According to Bobby Lee, the exchange's founder, “Most investors have left the market.” What happened? The short answer is regulation.
In early December China's central bank declared that Bitcoin was not a currency. This slowed its rise, but enthusiasts remained unbowed as the declaration fell far short of the outright ban some had feared. Then regulators forbade the firms that act as middlemen between businesses and credit-card networks from working with the exchanges. That was a more serious blow, but exchange operators found ways round the ban.
Rumours now suggest that the central bank has instructed commercial banks to halt all dealings with cyber-exchanges by April 15th. Such a move would be even more harmful to Bitcoin, says Zennon Kapron of Kapronasia, a local expert on the topic. As in most places, Bitcoin has not taken off as a means of payment in China; instead, it is mainly a speculative investment. But the steady drip of new rules makes it ever harder for ordinary Chinese to invest.
Still, one venture capitalist keen on crypto-currencies predicts “some workaround is likely”. If banks are forbidden to hold corporate accounts for exchanges, one insider whispers that personal bank accounts of senior executives could be used instead. OKCoin, another Chinese exchange, insists it has an emergency plan involving an “overseas version”.
It is too early to declare Bitcoin dead in China. On March 21st the central bank clarified that it was not banning trading in crypto-currencies. Still, its crackdown has dispelled the dream that was helping to drive up Bitcoin's value in the first place. As Mr Lee points out wistfully, “A billion Chinese won't all be buying Bitcoin anytime soon.”
1.promised land n.上帝允许给亚伯拉罕的地方；乐土；福地
Silicon valley is the promised land for cash-strapped politicians.
Next year in the promised land.
2.account for 导致，引起
Do women account for more of today's affairs?
Philosophers had long wondered how to account for essences.
3.according to 根据，按照；据…所说
According to woz, the two are still friends.
They expanded according to need.
4.work with 与…在一起干；从事…工作
So that's one way we work with magazines.
Companies also work with intermediaries that try to circulate good ideas.