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Coinbase will support newly-minted Bitcoin Cash after all

The cryptocurrency exchange's support is good news for the brand-new coin.
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NurPhoto via Getty Images

Earlier this week, disgruntled members of the bitcoin community successfully split a new cryptocurrency off from the main branch. Bitcoin Cash, as it's called, attempts to speed up transactions, a key problem with bitcoin's aging structure. But the new alternative currency will only survive if users invest in it. Some cryptocurrency exchanges said they wouldn't back it due to its instability, but one of those holdouts, Coinbase, just announced that it's come around and will support Bitcoin Cash.

In a blog post, Coinbase stated their decision came after careful review. Ensuring the security of Bitcoin Cash's network was a priority, as was evaluating customer demand, trading volumes, and regulatory considerations. But the exchange wanted to be clear that "both bitcoin and Bitcoin Cash remain safely stored on Coinbase," and "that customers with balances of bitcoin at the time of the fork now have an equal quantity of bitcoin cash stored by Coinbase."

Assuming no great risks emerge, Coinbase says it will start supporting Bitcoin Cash on January 1st, 2018. Once that happens, customers will be able to withdraw their new cryptocoins -- but until then, they'll stay safely locked away.

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