Bittrex to Delist Bitshares, Bitcoin Gold, and Bitcoin Private

  • Bittrex announced the removal of Bitshares, Bitcoin Gold, and Bitcoin Private wallets from its exchange.
  • None of these coins currently have markets on Bittrex, so users should remove their funds ASAP.

In a recently  published announcement,  popular cryptocurrency exchange Bittrex released that it will be closing wallets for Bitshares (BTS), Bitcoin Gold (BTG), and Bitcoin Private (BTCP).

The wallets will be closed on Monday, November 5, 2018. Any assets left on the exchange after that date will become unrecoverable. Any remaining funds can be removed by opening Bittrex and clicking on “Wallets,” then “withdraw.”

None of these coins currently have active markets on Bittrex. Even though you can’t currently trade these coins on the platform, Bittrex allowed traders to hold their coins on the exchange - until now.

It might seem strange that Bittrex isn’t trading cryptocurrencies like BTG or BTS. Both of these cryptocurrencies are in the top 50 cryptocurrencies by market cap, and are listed on other large exchanges like Binance. However, issues with the coins explain why Bittrex did not trade these cryptocurrencies.

Bitcoin Gold was originally delisted from Bittrex in September 2018, after BTG witnessed one of the largest 51% attacks in cryptocurrency history. After the attack happened, Bittrex asked BTG to recover the 12,372 BG (~$500M) that it lost during the hack. BTG declined, and was therefore delisted.

BitShares was delisted back in 2017, when Bittrex claimed that running a BTS node was too difficult, and was not worth the operating cost. The exchnage seemingly never had trading pairs for Bitcoin Private, as the cryptocurrency was airdropped to BTC holders in February of 2018. Bittrex allowed BTC holders to claim their BTCP from the exchange.

This announcement marks Bittrex’s newest removal. Their previous announcement, for an October 19, 2018 delisting, announced that Auroracoin (AUR), Bytecent (BYC), Credibit (CRB), OMNI, and Spreadcoin (SPR) will be removed. To learn more about all of Bittrex’s removals, click here to go to their support page.

Bittrex is currently the 35th most popular cryptocurrency exchange, turning over 8,047 BTC ($53M) of volume a day.

Bitcoin Trading at $600 Premium in India as Potential Ban Looms

Bitcoin (BTC) is currently trading at a roughly $600 premium in India, according to the market price available on the rupee-based exchange BitBns.com.

At the time of writing, bitcoin trades for just under 8 lakh rupees, or 800,000 INR, which is nearly $11,500 - significantly more than the going dollar price of $10,860.

This extreme price premium can be attributed to the difficulty of buying crypto in the country. As of last year, all regulated Indian banks and financial institutions have been banned from transacting in, and offering services related to crypto.

But the environment could soon become even more hostile.

CryptoGlobe reported in late April that a government working group made up of Indian tax, consumer protection, and general economic ministries had recommended a complete ban on even transacting or owning cryptoassets, much less integrating them into the mainstream, legal economy.

Bitcoin Demand Strong in India?

BitBns, one of the few operational rupee-denominated exchanges remaining, has apparently been able to skirt the increasingly draconian environment by allowing users to conduct their own P2P market, facilitated by the website, in order to buy and sell in Indian rupees. Other popular Indian exchanges, like Coindelta, have been forced to shut down.

The high premium may suggest a healthy demand in India for bitcoin and other cryptoassets, as Indians without international banking connections are forced to use the local currency to buy crypto. Data from crypto analytics website Coin.dance show that another popular crypto-fiat P2P platform, LocalBitcoins, has seen a sharp uptick in Indian trading volume since March-April.

indialocalbitcoins.png(source: Coin.dance)

CryptoGlobe reported last month that volumes were not affected by, and even increased in spite of, the threat of a crypto ban.

Indian Government Measures

One recent instance in particular shows just how far the Indian government seems to be going to control the Indian economy.

In late 2016, the national government suddenly and without warning even to its own ministries, declared that all 500- and 1,000-rupee banknotes currently in circulation were null and void - in an action that is known in India as “Demonetization.” These notes represented more than half of the physical money then in circulation in the country.

While the stated aims of the action were to root out corruption and “black money” from the economy, Demonetization has often been panned as a disastrous failure that cost 1% of the country’s GDP, a loss of 1.5 million jobs, and hurt the poor most of all.