I've heard the argument that China is not closing the exchanges permanently, but suspending them until tighter oversight is implemented.
Regardless, such an all-encompassing pronouncement has led to a spectacular drop in the price of Bitcoin, losing 35% of its value, from a late-summer high of $5000 to around $3400 as of September 14.
The Japanese government has also spelled out regulations to help prevent misuse of bitcoins and other virtual currencies for terrorism or other illegal activities, including requiring banks and other businesses to verify identities, keep records and report suspicious transactions. According to publically available data, approximately 95 percent of global exchanges from traditional fiat currency into bitcoin are from purchases in the Chinese renminbi.
China has notified regional regulators that it aims to stop exchange trading of cryptocurrencies by the end of the month, according to people familiar with the matter. As for exchanges' prices, Bitcoin is trading at about $2904.64 on OkCoin, $2887.97 - on Huobi, and $2908.37 - on BTCC at press time.
Rumours swirling in China's financial community suggest that complaints and threats to launch protests by private investors who had lost money in initial coin offerings (ICOs), prompted the authorities to act. Jamie Dimon, the current CEO of JPMorgan Chase, recently stated that he believes Bitcoin "is a fraud" and that it would all eventually come crashing down.
China's bitcoin crackdown is wreaking havoc on the virtual currency. The implemented rules over WeChat were just a succession of regulation that were drafted out after ICO's ban, and Bitcoin-to-fiat exchanges close down.
Bitcoin is on track for its worst month since January 2015.
Vlad Zamfir, a researcher at the Switzerland-based Ethereum Foundation, told Reuters that it was no surprise China is moving against such currencies.