[updated November 2018] The world of cryptocurrency is, without a doubt, a fascinating one, attracting millions of professional and amateur investors alike with each passing year. If you’re even a bit familiar with cryptocurrencies and their basics, then you surely know that digital currencies can’t be simply acquired from a bank.
This is where cryptocurrency exchanges come into play. In short, cryptocurrency exchange platforms are online portals that allow you to buy, sell, or exchange cryptocurrencies for other digital currencies or traditional currencies such as the Euro or the US dollar.
Since there are thousands of cryptocurrencies out there right now, there’s no surprise that there are a staggering number of cryptocurrency exchanges as well, each one with its own pros and cons. When it comes to choosing the right crypto exchange for you, aspects such as reputation, fees, payment methods, verification requirements, exchange rates, and possible geographical restrictions should be at the top of your checklist.
As a new investor, you could choose from some of the industry’s leading crypto exchanges such as Binance, Coinbase, Kucoin, Kraken, Gemini, Poloniex, Bittrex, Gate.io, and Huobi, all of which have established solid reputations. Or, you could opt for some of the best crypto exchanges established in 2018 that, even though they’re new to the market, still offer competitive features.
We have created this guide that lays out the best cryptocurrency exchanges launched in 2018, as well as all the key features that make them worthy of your attention:
Despite its name that might hint to it being a forex brokerage website, BitForex is a new cryptocurrency exchange launched in June 2018. According to CoinMarketCap, the exchange is currently ranked 57th with a 24-hour volume of $7,674,807,770.
Even though there’s not much information about the background, the exchange mainly targets the Chinese market, currently supports 84 active pairs and accepts CNY deposits.
The exchange has very competitive services with very low fees. For starters, it’s worth pointing out that market “makers,” people who place an order in the book, do not have to pay anything. Market “takers,” people who take the best possible price from the order book, only have to pay a fee of 0.10%. It might not sound impressive, but that’s well below the industry’s standard of 0.20-0.25%. Regarding security features, BitForex offers two-factor authentication (2FA), as well as IP detection on login.
Another noteworthy aspect is the fact that BitForex supports altcoin trading, a feat that not all new crypto exchanges can boast. The list currently includes BTC, BCH, ETH, ETC, LTC, AION, and CMCT, which are mainly traded against USDT.
Liquid has burst onto the crypto market and scene with a force in 2018, eclipsing several longer-standing exchanges in size, scale, and user experience. It was launched in 2014, but has seen a substantial uptick this year in use. It has also added fiat trading pairs for major coins—and sees high volumes in Japanese Yen trading pairs.
According to CoinMarketCap, Liquid is currently ranked 61st in trading volume, with over 150 trading pairs–including smaller altcoins like Kryll and Morpheus Labs. It also offers margin trending and a lending system. You can read about its fee structure here.
Launched at the start of the year, in January 2018, Coinbe is a Polish exchange that mostly offers crypto-to-crypto trading. According to CoinMarketCap, the exchange is currently ranked 55th with a 24-hour volume of $15,752,217.
Coinbe offers its users various trading options with altcoins such as Ethereum, Ripple, Bitcoin Cash, NEM, Monero, Lisk, Waves, Dash, and EOS, to name a few. The company claims to keep all funds in cold wallets, which tend to be more secure and, thus, a lot less vulnerable to hacks.
Even though the exchange has a good reputation, the trading fees are a bit higher than most new crypto exchanges, namely 0.3% per trade. Another disadvantage is the fact that Coinbe does not support leveraged trading. Users will have to do with its web-based platform only, as there are no mobile or desktop apps currently available.
Launched in January 2018, Hotbit is a new cryptocurrency exchange that only offers crypto-to-crypto trading services. At the time of this writing, Hotbit is ranked 74th on CoinMarketCap, with a 24-hour volume of $8,066,798 and 132 trading pairs.
The crypto exchange has a lot of things going for it such as competitive trading fees, a solid number of coins offered for trading, and a good-looking web-based platform and mobile apps. Hotbit only charges takers with a 0.25% fee and, even better, the exchange does not require any deposit fees. Some of the most famous coins that can be traded on Hotbit include Bitcoin, Ethereum, EOS, OmiseGo, Icon, and TRON. As far as disadvantages are concerned, the platform doesn’t seem to be very suitable for beginners as fiat currencies are not supported.
DigiFinex is a Singapore-based cryptocurrency exchange launched in April 2018 that also targets the Chinese market. According to data from CoinMarketCap, DigiFinex is currently ranked 16th with a 24-hour volume of $94,113,508 and only 18 active markets. The exchange offers support for Fiat (CNY) to USDT transfers, and it allows you to trade anything from BTC, ETH, XRP, LTC, QUTU against USDT, BTC, and ETH. Interestingly, the exchange also has its own Ethereum-based token, the DFT. The token is designed so that holders can receive 80% of the daily fees. As far as exchange fees are concerned, both makers and takers pay the same fee of 0.20% of the transaction size. The platform’s trading interface is also quite standard.
Some of the main drawbacks of the platform are related to the fact that it is basically an unknown company, the fact that US and Singapore clients are not accepted, and that it has a very strong focus on the Chinese market.
Investors are advised to take their time and perform diligent research before using any of the crypto exchange platforms listed here.