The Best Crypto Exchanges
Top Cryptocurrency Exchanges
In this article, we take a deep dive and explore seven cryptocurrency exchanges, their features, strengths, weaknesses, and why they are needed. We also highlight a few factors that should guide a new trader or investor in picking their preferred cryptocurrency exchange.
Best cryptocurrency exchanges
A table showing the different cryptocurrency exchanges and their best-known qualities.
|Binance||Best at all High Volume Trading|
|Coinbase||Best App in The US|
|Bybit||Best For Crypto Derivatives|
|Bitmex||Most Advanced Crypto Trading|
|Kraken||High Volume Trading|
Binance is the largest cryptocurrency in the world, by trading volume. In addition to its large trading volume, it is also among the fastest crypto platforms in the market today. The company is headquartered in Malta, previously in China. Binance coin, due to its high exchange volume offers traders and investors a range of features and benefits. Binance provides traders and investors with one of the most diverse as well as the widest range of cryptos available. Ranging from the most popular coins to the lesser-known tokens, Binance offers them all.
Through Binance, investors can buy crypto by bank deposit, Credit/Debit card, Peer to Peer Trading, and third-party payment. Another good feature about Binance is its flexibility, suitable for both experienced traders and newbies. Binance caters to the needs of all traders, despite trading experience levels by offering multiple trading platforms. Also, with Binance, users can earn rewards by staking or depositing cryptos. There are also instant loan offers, insured by crypto assets. Binance has some of the lowest fees in the market.
Binance supports spot trading, margin trading, and futures trading. A disadvantage of using Binance is that there is no built-in digital wallet available. Another disadvantage is that Binance has regulatory trouble in a few countries.
Coinbase is self-acclaimed as the largest cryptocurrency exchange in the world. With its headquarters in San Francisco, the exchange is US-backed and users can sell, buy and trade cryptocurrencies. It is widely known for its ease of use and convenient interface making it perfect for newbie investors to use. It was established in 2012 and since then, has grown to accept investors and traders across 32 countries.
Coinbase traders and investors have diverse ways of funding their accounts including Bank accounts, Wire transfers, Cryptocurrencies, and Credit cards. Also, withdrawals can be made on Coinbase directly into Paypal accounts.
There are no charges for deposits on Coinbase, although you will be charged a 1.49% fee when purchasing cryptocurrencies. Coinbase fees are not suitable for cryptocurrency day traders considering they are higher than other popular exchanges. Other fees that are payable by users of Coinbase are network transaction fees, minor fees, and exchange rate fees.
Unlike most popular exchanges, verified Coinbase customer accounts enjoy high account limits, some up to $50,000 worth of Bitcoin at a time. Security on Coinbase is rated high as the exchange stores 98% of its cryptocurrency funds offline in cold storage wallets to minimize the risk of theft or loss. The cold storage wallets are spread all around the world in safety deposits and vaults.
The disadvantage of using Coinbase is that the fees are considered higher than other exchanges. Also, Coinbase has limited cryptocurrency assets and products, making it difficult to trade many altcoins.
Bybit is an online cryptocurrency exchange app that supports the buying and selling of crypto assets. Bybit also supports the trading of crypto through spot trading and derivatives.
Bybit supports 20 cryptocurrencies including Bitcoin, Dogecoin, Ripple, Ethereum, Tezos, Litecoin, and chainlink among others. Bybit was founded in 2018 and its headquarters is in Singapore. The crypto exchange is available globally except in a few countries like the United States, Cuba, Quebec, Singapore, Iran, North Korea, Sudan, Mainland China, Syria Crimea, and Sevastopol.
Bybit is generally known for its intuitive and user-friendly platform. Other advantages of Bybit include increased leverage of up to 100x with Bitcoin and 50x with other coins. It has an HD cold wallet storage system that guarantees the security of funds. Also, the platform ranks among the top 4 exchanges for 24-hour volumes of crypto futures contracts, with an average of $7Bn daily. A major disadvantage of Bybit is that deposits by Fiat are not supported, users can only make deposits using credit/debit cards. Another disadvantage of Bybit is the limited spot trading pairs.
Bitmex is a peer-to-peer cryptocurrency trading platform that was launched in 2014. The differentiating factor of Bitmex from other traditional and P2P cryptocurrency trading platforms is that Bitmex focuses on Cryptocurrency derivatives trading such as notional trading, futures, and margin trading. These cryptocurrency derivatives trading account for an average of $1Bn traded on the platform daily.
Due to its focus on leveraged trading and derivatives, Bitmex is ideal for experienced traders rather than newbies who only want to buy or sell small amounts of cryptocurrency. Although cryptocurrency/fiat pairs can be traded on Bitmex, the base currency of the exchange is bitcoin and it does not support fiat currency deposits or withdrawals. Also, another advantage of Bitmex is its leveraged margin trading which allows up to 100x for Bitcoin, 50x for Ethereum, and 25x for Monero contracts. Perpetual contracts and futures are also available on Bitmex.
Bitmex has a similarity to trading platforms used by institutional investors and hedge funds. BitMEX does not charge for deposits or withdrawals and has relatively low trading fees. Bitmex’s wallets are multi-signature to minimize the risk of losing funds even during an attack.
The disadvantages of using Bitmex are that they are not suitable for new traders or investors. Also, deposits and withdrawals can only be made through bitcoin.
Bitfinex is one of the best cryptocurrency exchanges that is aimed at cryptocurrency trading and investing. It is based in Hong Kong and it deals with BTC/USD and seven other popular altcoins like Monero and Ethereum.
Bitfinex ranks among the top cryptocurrency exchanges by volume and this development was a result of the decision of the Central Bank of China to impose reading fees on cryptocurrency trading. Bitfinex is considered one of the most reliable cryptocurrency exchanges globally due to its transparent reporting of the trading volume.
Bitfinex has stepped up its methods of deposits from only cryptocurrency to fiat currencies. Although, users have to wait for 5-7 days when depositing USD, EURO, GBP, and JPY. To withdraw Bitcoin, Bitfinex suggests a wait time of 12 hours although, it usually takes two hours. Bitfinex has a taker fee of 0.2% and a maker fee of 0.1%. However, for transactions that exceed $7.5 million, the maker fees are waived while the taker fees can be as low as 0.1%.
Short sellers also have to pay additional fees as stimulated by the cryptocurrency exchange platforms peer to peer functionality. Investors are not allowed to short sell more than 70% of their position. Bitfinex stores 99.5% of its user’s funds in cold wallets while the remaining 0.5% of funds are stored in hot wallets to provide the liquidity needed for the exchange.
Also, the platform has two levels of security authentication for traders, the 2-factor authentication and the Universal 2nd factor. The disadvantage of Bitfinex is that it does not accept US clients. Also, many traders have reported a lack of transparency on the platform.
Kraken is one of the best cryptocurrency exchanges and it is well known for its self-acclaimed best security of Bitcoin funds. The exchange was launched in 2011 and is based in San Francisco. The platform is debated to be the most sophisticated, secure, and reputable by cryptocurrency traders.
In terms of trading volume, Kraken has the highest Euro volume of Bitcoin trading of all the exchanges. It is also the first cryptocurrency exchange to incorporate its data into the Bloomberg Terminal.
The limitation to Kraken is that deposits and withdrawals can only be through bank or wire transfers and not through credit or debit cards, or digital wallets like skrill or Paypal. This limitation is due to risk or fraud. Kraken has never suffered any major security breach and is considered to have strict security measures. The disadvantage of Kraken is its customer service response time.
Unlike other cryptocurrency exchanges, currency.com is a platform of tokenized assets designed to make trading easy and fast. Aside from offering tokenized assets, the platform allows the trading of traditional assets in classes in form of tokens.
Launched in 2019, the company has its headquarters in the UK and Gibraltar. Currency.com offers over 2000 tokenized asset classes. These tokenized asset classes range from bonds, equities, and indices to commodities, while also supporting fiat and crypto trading.
With Currency.com, investors and traders are exposed to the largest tokenized stocks like Apple, Tesla, and Amazon.com. Also, some of the tokenized indices include DAX30 and S&P500. The commodities include gold and crude oil. A major advantage of Currency.com is that it offers leverage of up to 500x.
Also, Currency.com allows traders to trade directly in crypto across different asset classes. These traders can book their profit in crypto without the need to convert to fiat. Currency.com is regulated by FinCEN, FinTRAC, DLT, and HTP.
Currency.com’s platform is easy to use and it has a demo platform for new users to get acquainted with before going live.
The exchange provides appropriate tools to manage risk and perform the needed technical analysis With over 75 technical indicators to choose from. Currency.com helps users minimize losses by providing negative balance protection.
Another benefit is that Currency.com publishes its audit results under the about us section of its website. Also, users can even as much as 50% on referral trading commissions for the first 6 months.
A disadvantage of Currency.com is that supported cryptos are the largest by market cap, which limits access to smaller or lesser-known crypts in the marketplace.
How to choose the best crypto exchange
1. Availability in your country
The first step when choosing a crypto exchange is to check if it is available for use in your country. As strange as it sounds, not all cryptocurrency exchanges are available worldwide. The reason for this is primarily attributed to financial regulations that govern the cryptocurrency market.
Also, you should contact your trading platform and inquire if they accept your fiat currency and deposit exchanges permitted in your country.
Another key factor in choosing your preferred crypto exchange is the security of the exchange. Before you commit your funds, you have to ensure the security of your investment, not only in terms of the protection of funds but also in the efficiency of the platform. Most cryptocurrency exchanges have centralized fund storage, which places the reliability of the platform on the security measures undertaken by them.
To ensure a better understanding of your preferred crypto exchange, you should read all their precautionary and security clauses on their website, keeping an eye for the features such as;
- Ease of transfer between hardware wallet and exchange
- SSL site security certificate
- Two-factor authentication
- Multi-layered verification for deposits and withdrawals
- Cold storage wallets for every client
3. Available Cryptocurrencies
Many exchanges allow investors to buy/sell or trade popular cryptos like Ethereum, Bitcoin, Litecoin, and USD Tether. However, if you plan on using lesser-known cryptocurrencies, you have to ensure your preferred crypto exchange permits trading in the crypto against your fiat currency.
You also need to be adequately liquid to trade those cryptos when you want to, following international standards.
4. Ease of Use
Another factor that should guide your choice in picking a cryptocurrency exchange is the ease of use of the platform. Many investors and traders often feel confused with exchanges that display complex order books and complicated-looking interfaces with many charts and features.
5. Exchange Volume
This is one of the most important factors to consider but it is often overlooked by many traders. It is vital to know which exchanges have a high exchange/trade volume because it generally signifies a high level of trust. However, aside from the high level of trust by many users, a high trade volume signifies that the platform has more resources to secure your assets. Also, most of the platforms with high trading volume tend to reward their traders with freebies and exchanges.
Other factors to look out for when picking a cryptocurrency exchange are trading fees, customer support, leverage and products, and tech infrastructure.
There are various cryptocurrency exchanges in the market today. However, picking the right exchange for you is important because in most cases, it will affect your performance as an investor or trader. It is best to consider all the factors listed above before settling for an exchange.
1) How much does it cost to buy cryptocurrencies?
Cryptocurrencies do not have a fixed cost but different platforms charge deposit fees in addition to the price of the asset.
2) How can I keep my cryptocurrency?
You can keep your cryptocurrencies privately or you can invest in a cryptocurrency exchange.
3) How do I know which cryptocurrency exchange to use?
There are factors like security, ease of use, and convenience that should guide your choice of a cryptocurrency exchange.
4) Can I use all cryptocurrency apps in any country?
Not all cryptocurrency exchanges work in every country. You will need to ensure that your preferred exchange is allowed in your country.