Bitcoin miners are reportedly fleeing China because it is cracking down on cryptocurrencies

Two of China's largest bitcoin mining operations are looking to set up shop elsewhere as the country expands its clampdown on cryptocurrencies to mining operations, Bloomberg news reported Friday.  Bitmain, which runs two exchanges, has set up a regional office in Singapore, as well as mining operations in the US and Canada, CEO Wu Jihan told the news channel in an interview. News of the impending crackdown was first reported Wednesday. China banned wildly popular initial coin offerings — or ICO's — last year, as well as banning trading of the digital assets on local exchanges. The country had initially been popular for cryptocurrency mining because of cheap energy costs.  The policy shift could drastically affect the bitcoin mining landscape, which is already struggling with transaction times that can exceed 10 minutes.  The price of bitcoin has tapered slightly from its intraday highs, but is still trading up more than 7% at $16,471 per coin.   SEE ALSO: Sign up to get the most important updates on all things crypto delivered straight to your inbox. Join the conversation about this story » NOW WATCH: Bitcoin can be a bubble and still change the world

 
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