Mt. Gox at Death’s Door? Bitcoin price slips below $100, before rebounding slightly

bitcoin-cracked-smokeThe problems continue to pile up for the beleaguered Mt. Gox, where the price of a single Bitcoin briefly plummeted to below $100 after the exchange claimed that “security issues” were the reason it’s unable to resume withdrawal capability to its customers as planned, reports CoinDesk. Mt. Gox posted a note on its website, stating that the resumption of withdrawals has been delayed because its had to relocate its headquarters to another site in Tokyo.

“In addition to the technical issue, this week we have experienced some security problems, and as a result we had to relocate MtGox to our previous office building in Shibuya. … The move, combined with some other security and technical challenges, pushed back our progress,” stated Mt. Gox.

Mt. Gox users have been left in limbo for more than a week now since these technical issues cropped up. Formerly the most preeminent Bitcoin exchange in the world, the virtual currency was trading at over $1,000 per Bitcoin on the platform just one month ago. However, things quickly fell apart earlier this month, when Mt. Gox’s developers noticed a problem with their withdrawal approval software that led to them suspending withdrawals of both fiat and BTC on the site. The developers later said the problem was due to a known bug called “transaction malleability”, which meant people could trick the exchange into double-sending withdrawals. This bug was actually identified in 2011, but it wasn’t until Mt. Gox publicized it that it became well known, briefly forcing other exchanges to suspend withdrawals too. However, while other exchanges were able to resume withdrawals after a few days, Mt. Gox has so far been unable to resolve its own issues.

Now, with the exchange seemingly about to fall over the precipice into oblivion, the cryptocurrency has fallen to lows that haven’t been seen in over six months.

Currently, Mt.Gox’s Bitcoin has rebounded a little and is trading at $140.01 at the time of writing. However, this is well short of the average Bitcoin price across other exchanges, which sits at $583.20 at the time of writing, according to the weighted average on Bitcoinaverage.com.

Mt. Gox’s problems are thought to have contributed to Bitcoin’s overall decline in value – the cryptocurrency was trading at over $700 earlier this month – although it’s safe to say that it appears to be weathering the storm. Indeed, the fact that prices have stayed high on exchanges like BTC-e and Bitstamp would seem to indicate that Bitcoin is surprisingly strong these days, and able to maintain relative stability better than it has before.

It remains to be seen if Mt. Gox will recover from this disaster, but it’s clear that its owners aren’t about to give up yet. The site is still actively trading in spite of the lack of withdrawal capability, and if it can resolves these problems then those who’re buying Bitcoin are getting themselves an absolute steal, as the price would presumably shoot back up to normal levels if and when they’re able to cash out.

Then again, perhaps a collapse might be a good thing for Bitcoin in the long run. Despite its status, Mt. Gox has a history of incompetence having experienced downtime on more than one occasion in the past, and it’s done little good for Bitcoin’s reputation. If Mt. Gox really were to fall, with any luck it’ll be replaced by better organized exchanges that are far more reliable. If so, that would quickly put an end to much of the negative press about the cryptocurrency right now.

About Mike Wheatley

Mike Wheatley is a senior staff writer at SiliconANGLE. He loves to write about Big Data and the Internet of Things, and explore how these technologies are evolving within the enterprise and helping businesses to become more agile. Before joining SiliconANGLE, Mike was an editor at Argophilia Travel News, an occassional contributer to The Epoch Times, and has also dabbled in SEO and social media marketing. He usually bases himself in Bangkok, Thailand, though he can often be found roaming through the jungles or chilling on a beach. Got a news story or tip? Email Mike@SiliconANGLE.com.