Exchanges are online platforms where you can easily buy or sell cryptocurrencies. They provide a marketplace to exchange tokens for fiat or one token for another. The exchange can be centralized or decentralized; the former is controlled by a central party, while the latter has no central authority. This article will show you the best ones to choose from.
Binance is the world’s most popular crypto exchange. It has the highest daily trading volume and supports over 350 cryptocurrencies. Binance is famous for having relatively low fees; it takes just 0.1% for standard spot trades. This platform allows you to trade complex crypto-based derivatives, e.g., futures and options. The fee for derivatives trades varies depending on the volume.
Binance has the highest liquidity of any exchange. You can buy and sell tokens instantly because you’ll likely find a counterparty for any trade you want. The drawback is that Binance faces significant regulatory pushback worldwide, especially in North America and Europe. Several countries, such as Canada and the UK, have banned it for facilitating trading without due registration.
Binance has no listed corporate headquarters, although it is reportedly based in Dubai, United Arab Emirates.
Coinbase is the biggest exchange in the United States of America (USA). It’s the only crypto platform listed on the US stock markets. The platform is strictly regulated by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, which makes it trusted by American users.
Coinbase supports over 150 tokens, including popular ones like Bitcoin and Ethereum. It processes a few hundred million dollars in daily transactions, which implies high liquidity. The drawback is that retail traders can not buy or sell derivatives on Coinbase; it’s only open to select institutional investors and on a separate platform.
Kraken is another popular exchange for American and European traders. It offers over 220 cryptocurrencies with a daily trading volume of over $100 million. This platform offers competitive fees; expect to pay between 0% to 0.26% of every trade plus applicable card processing fees.
Kraken is famous for being one of the most secure trading platforms. It’s one of the few exchanges never to have a major hacking event. You may find complaints about hacked individual accounts, but the main platform has never been compromised.
Kraken is facing noteworthy regulatory issues across the globe. This year, it shut down operations in Japan and the United Arab Emirates. After a $30 million fine from the U.S. SEC, it also shut down its staking product. However, it continues to offer spot trading to US-based and European customers.
Uniswap is a decentralized platform, unlike the others on this list. This implies that there’s no third party holding custody of tokens and facilitating transactions. Users trade directly with each other and pay fees to the liquidity providers enabling them to trade.
This platform is built on the Ethereum blockchain. Hence, it only supports Ethereum-based tokens. You can not trade Bitcoin or any other non-Ethereum-based coin. Uniswap has its native token called UNI.
Bybit is an exchange based in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. This platform is well-known for offering crypto-based derivatives. For example, you can bet on Ethereum price movements by buying futures contracts.
Bybit is a platform designed for professional and experienced traders that trade with significant risk. Other platforms will serve you better if you’re a retail trader dealing primarily with spot trades.
Due to strict regulations on selling derivatives, Bybit is not available in several countries, such as the US and UK.