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Are you interested in buying cryptocurrency? Want to know what all the fuss is about? Do you want to make sure you're a part of the next financial craze that sweeps the nation? When it comes to cryptocurrency, there's a lot to know - both good and bad. But it's not rocket science.
Obviously, one of the primary reasons that people to get involved in crypto is the potential for financial gain. Cryptocurrencies have experienced substantial price increases in the past, leading to significant profits for early adopters and investors. Conversely, cryptocurrencies have also experience significant decreases in value. With such a volatile asset, the old adage "buy low, sell high" has never been more true.
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Kraken is a solid crypto exchange that provides good 24/7 customer service phone support. They offer attractive transaction fees and sophisticated features with Kraken Pro, including futures and margin trading for U.S. investors. They also have a wide range of educational material where you can learn about cryptocurrency. Still, Kraken recently reached a $30 million dollar settlement with the SEC due to its crypto-staking program, and novice traders will be presented with higher fees than other exchanges. While it's understandable if you're cautious about Kraken, they've earned the top choice on our list - especially for those with prior crypto experience.
Coinbase is a very good, easy-to-use option for both novices and experts alike. They offer more than 200 tradable cryptocurrencies, with a user-friendly interface that simplifies the purchase process. Their Coinbase One subscriber program is worth its weight in gold. Still, as with all crypto exchanges in this young industry, Coinbase is not without its issues. Their non-subscriber service has relatively high transaction fees and notoriously poor customer service. The company has also had a recent history of lawsuits. All that being said, Coinbase is the largest, and one of the most dynamic, U.S.-based exchanges. It's a strong choice to consider for those trading in the U.S.
Binance was founded by Chinese entrepreneur Changpeng Zhao, and is a technically-maltese exchange that's grown to become the largest in the world. With an attractive UI and low transaction fees, Binance is - on the surface - a good choice for your exchange. However, its poor customer service, and role in facilitating money-laundering and regulation skirting, should be kept in mind before trading with Binance.
With a beginner friendly focus, this Canadian-based exchange is an excellent choice for Canadian or EU citizens looking to get started with crypto trading. And - having just recently merged with Coinsquare - CoinSmart is the largest Canadian-focused crypto trading platform. For those more experienced, or not located in Canada, you may be better off with a more robust or geographically-appropriate exchange.
With a huge amount of cryptocurrencies offered, and robust trading options, KuCoin is an excellent choice of exchange... for those outside the U.S. Unfortunately, U.S. users are mostly restricted to the buying and selling of their extensive list of coins. For the purchase of less-common cryptocurrencies, KuCoin can still be a great option for U.S. investors, even as their main exchange may be elsewhere.
Citing its (apparent) regulatory compliance and robust security measures, Crypto is a fast growing centralized exchange founded in 2016. One of Crypto's perks is its "Crypto earn" program: if you lend them specific coins through their integrated DefI wallet, you earn a percent-based reward. These loans, however, are uninsured and unsecured. Keep in mind that a similar program - Gemini earn - lost all of its users' assets, and never adequately informed them of the risks. All that being said, Crypto's reasonable .075 maker/taker fee, and no scandals, breaches, or lawsuits on record (a rarity in the crypto world), mean that it is an attractive choice for those who can afford the $500 deposit minimum.
With no exchange, transaction, or withdrawal fees (aside from the "gas" needed to transfer crypto), and a super-simple user interface, Robinhood can be an excellent choice for new investors. Their acceptance of payment for order flow (PFOF) means that large market makers pay Robinhood for the privilege of filling your order (which may affect the price you pay). You may remember them from their role in the 2021 Gamestop short squeeze, which made them infamous in many corners of the internet.
In contrast to other centralized exchanges on our list, eToro is part broker and part social media, billing itself as the" world's leading social investment community" . With robust virtual portfolios, and the ability to copy/crowdsource trading information, eToro is a great choice for newcomers looking to start investing in stocks, crypto and ETFs. However, its high transfer and transaction fees mean that if you are only looking to invest in crypto, or already know the ropes, you would be much better served elsewhere.
With its roots in designing software stretching all the way back to 1982, TradeStation has been in the business for a long time. However, this holds less weight in an industry where the business is often a bit shady to retail investors to begin with. With high maker/taker fees, in addition to accepting payment for order flow, there are much better cryptocurrency exchanges out there than TradeStation, for both beginner and advanced traders.
Founded in 2015, and registered in New York, Gemini positioned itself as a convenient, growing exchange that used to cover 10 crypto transfers per month. However, Gemini has lost the assets of 340,000 participants in their "Gemini earn" program. As such, we think it best you avoid Gemini, and choose exchanges who actually ensure your crypto is safe.
Uphold distinguishes itself from its competitors via the diversity of assets it offers and its uniquely terrible business practices. While you can buy a mix of precious metals, stocks, and crypto with Uphold, they are infamous for convincing their customers to lend their crypto to CredEarn, a company whose CCO was an escaped convict. It did not go well for the investors, and while Uphold is limping along, none of their customers have been reimbursed.
Another reason people have turned to crypto is for financial freedom: Cryptocurrencies offer the possibility of financial freedom by providing an alternative to traditional financial systems. They operate on decentralized networks, which let you have more control over your money and bypasses the need for intermediaries such as banks.
If you want o to buy cryptocurrencies, then you need to open an account with a crypto exchange. Cryptocurrency exchanges are a sort of marketplace where buyers and sellers can connect and transact with various digital assets. Exchanges typically offer a wide range of cryptocurrencies, which can let you diversify your investment portfolio. There are literally hundreds of crypto exchanges available to you - it's enough to make your head swim.
Good crypto exchanges provide a user-friendly and accessible platform for you to trade digital currencies. They can also display real-time price information, which let you monitor market trends and make informed decisions more quickly. The best exchanges implement robust security measures in order to protect your funds and personal information. They will employ encryption, two-factor authentication, and possibly cold storage solutions to safeguard assets from theft or hacking attempts.
So which crypto exchange is the best? That's a tough question to answer, as exchanges - just like cryptocurrency itself - are currently in flux. Whether you're looking at security breaches, lawsuits and regulatory side-stepping, exploitative data harvesting practices, consistently poor customer service, high-profile collapses such as FTX, irresponsible crypto lending like Gemini, or payment-for-order flow profiteering, the crypto-scene is not for the risk averse, and not for those unwilling to do their homework. However, if you are going to be trading crypto, it is well worth your time to do the research to ensure the security of your investments, and the quality of the exchange you choose to utilize.
If that wasn't enough to make you pause, consider that a whole slew of exchanges are being sued by the SEC and the CFTC. Whatever your position, the future of crypto is being actively negotiated in the U.S, as the SEC and CFTC (Commodities and Futures Trade Commision) wage regulatory battles over the status of cryptocurrency as an unregistered security.
In short, there is a lot to consider when choosing a cryptocurrency exchange. By doing some digging on your behalf, we at TopConsumerReviews.com hope to help you find the right exchange in an increasingly volatile landscape.
Before you start with our list, here are some critical points to keep in mind:
That might seem like a lot to keep in mind. It's natural to feel some anxiety when choosing an appropriate exchange, but don't let it discourage you! Taking the time to find the right exchange can pay (and protect) your dividends down the line. Here at Top Consumer Reviews, we've waded through the best (and worst) of what's out there, and have found the best exchanges for your consideration.
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