Bitcoin (BTC) fell 2% Friday, the most in three weeks, after the market was spooked by the announcement that the cryptocurrency exchange OKEx had suspended withdrawals because founder Mingxing “Star” Xu was reportedly taken into police custody.
The executive is the holder of a private key needed to authorize withdrawals, and that became impossible since he was out of touch, the exchange wrote in a notice published early Friday morning. Officials with OKEx, which is based in Malta but led by Chinese executives, said the issue involved a personal matter, not the exchange, and shouldn’t affect ongoing business.
Traders said the price impact might be short-lived. “I don’t think this news colors BTC the wrong way as much as it does the venue,” Vishal Shah, a trader and founder of the Alpha 5 exchange, told CoinDesk.
Decentralized finance, or DeFi, is one of the hottest trends in the crypto industry. So it’s not surprising the DeFi craze would find its