What are Cryptocurrency Exchanges?
Cryptocurrency exchanges are online platforms in which you can exchange one kind of digital asset for another based on the market value of the given assets.
It is important not to confuse cryptocurrency exchanges for cryptocurrency wallets or wallet brokerages. Cryptocurrency wallets and wallet brokerages generally allow you to buy and sell a small range of popular digital assets (Bitcoin and Ethereum), which you can then send to a different exchange to trade for other digital assets like altcoins. This statement is not entirely exclusive though; most cryptocurrency exchanges will usually limit their users to only trade digital assets for digital assets, but a few allow trades of fiat currencies such as U.S. Dollars for cryptocurrencies. An example of such an exchange is Kraken, which currently accepts funds in the form of USD, JPY, CAD, and GBP, and supports trades with Monero, Ripple, and Litecoin as well as Bitcoin and Ethereum.
1. Coinbase << coinbase.com >>
Coinbase is one of the biggest cryptocurrency companies around, supporting over 100 countries, with more than 30 million customers around the world. Coinbase has a wide array of services but their main service allows users to buy and sell Bitcoins through a bank account, credit card and debit card.
2. Kraken << kraken.com >>
Kraken, headquartered in San Francisco, California, claims to be the largest Bitcoin exchange in terms of euro volume and liquidity.
Kraken supplies an advanced trading platform complete with margin trading and OTC options. The site has a focus on security and customer support. Kraken also offers one of the lowest trading fees around.
3. Binance.us << binance.us >>
Based in San Francisco, Binance.US is operated by the U.S.-registered company BAM Trading Services which acts as its official partner. Its relationship with the international Binance franchise is strong enough for Binance.US to be designated as its “arm”, yet the Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao claims that he has no “legal titles” or an “operational role” in it. Binance.US is headed by Catherine Coley, a former executive at Ripple.
While the platform has started accepting account registrations and deposits/withdrawals of cryptocurrencies, its services do not yet cover the entirety of the US market, as the following states have been excluded from its support as of the time of writing the review (September 19, 2019):
- New York
- North Carolina
At the moment, Binance.US officials promise that this gradual coverage is only the beginning, making it their mission to eventually include as many US states as possible.
4. Bittrex << bittrex.com >>
One of the reasons why Bittrex is so popular is because it’s available all around the globe, and this, of course, opens the platform up to billions of people.
5. Localbitcoins << localbitcoins.com >>
LocalBitcoins is a P2P Bitcoin exchange. Buyers and sellers agree on trade terms, and LocalBitcoins is used as escrow.
LocalBitcoins is a global Bitcoin exchange that gives a lot of options to its users.
- LocalBitcoins is one of the most private ways to purchase bitcoins
- In some countries it is the only way to buy bitcoins
- It allows you to buy bitcoins with many payment methods