The price of BitConnect’s controversial cryptocurrency has cratered following Tuesday’s news that its lending and exchange operation is shutting down – and investors have been unable to sell their tokens despite claims the site would stay online this week.
The closure of BitConnect’s lending and exchange platform was a major development given that its sales pitch prominently features the promised returns from lending out the currency, known as BCC, via the site. After the announcement, the price of BCC tanked on the few public markets on which the cryptocurrency trades.
According to data from CoinMarketCap, BCC was trading above $400 at the start of 2018, yet in the wake of Tuesday’s bombshell, the price has fallen by more than 90%, trading at roughly $17.25 per coin as of press time
Akin to high-yield investment plans, BitConnect touted larger returns based on the amount loaned (users would deposit bitcoin and buy BCC in order to lend).
As might be expected, BitConnect drew comparisons to cryptocurrency investment schemes such as OneCoin, which was widely believed to be a pyramid scheme.
The allegation that BitConnect is a Ponzi scheme – in which earlier investors are effectively rewarded with the proceeds of new investors – gained traction in recent weeks as state regulators in the U.S. issued cease-and-desist letters to the outfit in connection with an initial coin offering.
The mix of regulatory scrutiny and “bad press” was ultimately blamed for the platform shutdowns. And now, users are crying foul and searching for answers amid a wider plunge in cryptocurrency markets.
The situation is playing out across disparate social media channels, with the main BitConnect subreddit being set to private (it has been alleged that this was done intentionally by the subreddit’s moderators)…