Bitcoin fell by six percent to $7,700 at 11am, falling to $7,612 at 2.14pm.
Fears of a global regulatory clampdown were worsened by Lloyds’ announcement today that it will refuse Bitcoin transactions on credit cards for its nine million customers.
The UK high-street bank is concerned that it could be forced to pay off unpaid debts if the current price drop in digital currencies continues.
Other household names in the banking giant’s credit card family include Bank of Scotland, Halifax and MBNA.
The move follows similar crackdowns by US banks including JP Morgan Chase & Co and Citigroup over the last week.
Uncertainty has also come from China, which reportedly introduced a firewall to prevent people in the country from accessing websites that offer cryptocurrency trading services or initial coin offerings (ICOs).
A source from People’s Bank of China-affiliated Financial News said today: “Overseas transactions and regulatory evasion have resumed.
“Risks are still there, fuelled by illegal issuance, and even fraud and pyramid selling.”
If that wasn’t bad enough, India could also tighten regulations.
S C Garg, India’s Economic Affairs Secretary, told CNBC TV18 news channel India’s government will regulate cryptocurrency exchanges to keep track of transactions conducted there.
The warning follows Indian finance minister’s vow last week to stop illicit cryptocurrency trading.
A panel set by the government to look into issues relating to cryptocurrencies is expected to submit its report in the current fiscal year, ending on March 31.
Will Bitcoin crash today?
Despite the bad announcements for crypto investors, there has not been a major Bitcoin crash today but the market is continuing its downward trend this afternoon.
The digital currency’s value has plummeted by almost two thirds since December when it peaked at nearly $20,000.
But some experts believe current prices are just another market blip.
Speaking about the slump, CEO of deVere Group Nigel Green said: “Demand for cryptocurrencies is set to sky rocket in 2018 as more people get to know about them and use them, and as the interest of governments and businesses, and more regulation, demonstrate how the market is maturing and becoming ever-more mainstream.”
He continued: “Bitcoin will remain highly volatile over the next 12 months, which should be expected.
“When it recovers from its current position and if and when it climbs pass the next major resistance point, we could see it surge by 50 to 60 percent, as many will jump in for fear of missing out for a second time.”
The coin’s volatility could mean the price could crash further, but Bitcoin – the largest of the cryptocurrencies and now a household name – could also soar during 2018.
Support has also arisen from Royal quarters with the Crown Prince of Liechtenstein, insisting cryptocurrency “is something to look into more into in the future”.
The Crown Prince Alois told CNBC: “Particularly with this whole new digital economy, it is something to look into more into in the future.”