Investors who held bitcoin on most exchanges as of Tuesday morning, when the split happened, should have automatically received the equivalent amount of bitcoin cash. The new currency started off with about one-tenth of Bitcoin's value and the price has fluctuated wildly since its creation - hitting a peak of $756.93 before falling to $284.89 earlier today.
The schism of bitcoin had been a number of years in the making, but this week saw it finally take place, resulting in the creation of a new cryptocurrency: bitcoin cash. Bitcoin cash removed compatibility with a more popular Segregated Witness upgrade proposal and expanded the size of the block - which limits the speed of transactions in the digital currency - from bitcoin's 1 megabyte to 8 megabytes.
That led to loud criticism, and threats of lawsuits from Coinbase customers.
Part of the reason bitcoin cash was created is to speed up transaction processes and withstand higher transaction fees.
Bcash duplicated the original bitcoin blockchain, meaning that anyone holding BTC was entitled to Bcash, but not all exchanges - including Coinbase, supported the forked currency from day one. Users will only be able to withdraw Bitcoin Cash from their wallets and that feature is not expected to be offered soon.
The original bitcoin traded Friday almost 3 percent higher at $2894.91, holding near Tuesday's highs, according to CoinDesk. "We'll make a determination at a later date about adding trading support".
"The inception of Bitcoin Cash may prove to be exactly what Bitcoin needs", Hayter said. Founded in 2012, the exchange still only trades bitcoin, ethereum, and litcoin - all digital currencies which the team has deemed stable enough for an armature investor to put money into, but also technically secure.
"I suspect the price drop is people selling newly minted" bitcoin cash, said Brian Kelly, a CNBC contributor and CEO of BKCM, which runs a digital assets strategy. One year ago the bitcoin value was $588, it peaked at over $3,000 in June, fell to about $1,939 on July 16, and is now trading at about $2,890. "We have made this decision because it is hard to predict how long the alternative version of bitcoin will survive and if Bitcoin Cash will have future market value", David Farmer, director of business development, wrote.
Sebastian Quinn-Watson, a venture partner for Blockchain Global, an Australia-based exchange, said some traders have said they will exit their BCC positions by August 8.
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