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Bitfinex Exchange Review
Bitfinex is a Hong Kong based cryptocurrency exchange that was founded in 2012 by Raphael Nicolle. The cryptocurrency exchange is both owned and operated by iFinex, Inc. Bitfinex is one of the largest in the world and is generally popular with traders across the globe, with a host of fiat currencies accepted and advanced trading options, however, the exchange recently decided to stop their services to U.S. customers due to banking issues. Bitfinex has their own proprietary token called UNUS SED LEO (LEO) that provides benefits to users who hold the digital asset. Our Bitfinex review will help you determine if it is the right exchange for you.
- One of the oldest cryptocurrency exchanges with plenty of liquidity
- Better for advanced users
- Very competitive trading fees
- Large variety of cryptocurrencies to buy
Pros & Cons
Lots of trading pairs
UNUS SED LEO provides benefits to users
Not available to US customers
History of security issues
Not beginner friendly
Bitfinex Funding Methods
|Bank Wire||Yes||Yes||1-5 days|
Bitfinex Trading Volume (USD)
Setting Up a Bitfinex Account
It is easy to set up an account on Bitfinex, just follow these simple steps:
- Go to the Bitfinex homepage and click Sign Up in the upper right corner
- Pick a username, enter an email, pick a password, accept their terms, pick your time zone, and finally enter the captcha, before clicking Open Account
- Open your email and confirm your account via the email they send you
- Login to your account once account is confirmed
- Accept the terms of service
- Set up Two Factor Authentication (2FA) or Universal Second Factor (U2F)
- Start using Bitfinex! You will need to fund your account through one of the methods listed below in order to begin trading on their platform. If you want to fund your account with a bank wire then you will need to undergo full Know Your Customer verification before continuing.
What Can You Buy on Bitfinex?
Bitfinex offers some of the most trading pairs of any exchange on the market, with tons of altcoins and pairs with multiple fiat currencies such as USD, EUR, GBP and JPY. Overall, they offer over 140 different cryptocurrencies for trade on the exchange. Here are some of the main assets they offer:
- Bitcoin (BTC)
- Ethereum (ETH)
- Cardano (ADA)
- Tether (USDT)
- Litecoin (LTC)
- Chainlink (LINK)
- Bitcoin Cash (BCH)
- Bitcoin SV (BSV)
- Ripple (XRP)
- Polkadot (DOT)
- Stellar (XLM)
- Multi-collateral Dai (DAI)
- Ethereum Classic (ETC)
- UNUS SED LEO (LEO)
- Tron (TRX)
- Tezos (XTZ)
For a full list of available cryptocurrencies on Bitfinex please visit their website.
Supporting Operating Systems
Bitfinex offers not only a desktop website, but a mobile app as well. The Operating Systems (OS) that Bitfinex supports are Linux, OSX, Windows, Android, and iOS. The browsers they support are Chrome, Firefox, Safari, Opera, Edge, and IE.
Is Bitfinex Safe?
Bitfinex has an unfortunate history of security issues. In 2015, they lost somewhere around 1500 Bitcoin from their hot wallet, or so that is what was reported. It is likely less than that, but there is actually very little information about the incident, affected users were reimbursed. Then in 2016, a much bigger hack occurred where 120K BTC was stolen. Affected users were reimbursed within 8 months but it was another strike against the exchange. There is rumors of issues with funds being tied up, and that is the main reason that they no longer allow US customers.
Apart from shaky history, Bitfinex is actually quite good when it comes to security. They offer both Two Factor Authentication (2FA) and Universal Second Factor (U2F), and actually require users to set it up on their accounts before they can do anything on the exchange. They only hold 0.5% of funds in hot wallets, meaning hackers have little to access if they are somehow successful, and they monitor IP address activity for all users in order to watch for irregularities. They have learned from their mistakes and aim to offer top class security, making it a safe place to trade cryptocurrency.
Bitfinex fees are actually fairly low. For trades, maker fees start at 0.1% and go down to 0% when you reach $7.5 million in trading volume in the past 30 days. Taker fees start at 0.2% and go down to as low as 0.055% when you reach $30 million in trading volume over the past 30 days. These are quite low compared to some other top exchanges.
There are no fees for crypto deposits, though withdrawals vary by asset. Depositing and withdrawing fiat currencies costs 0.1% regardless of amount, though there is a minimum of 60 USD/EUR for both deposits and withdrawals.
You can reduce your fees on Bitfinex by holding their proprietary token UNUS SED LEO (LEO). LEO is used by Bitfinex’s parent company iFinex in order to reduce their budget deficit. Each month they burn LEO equivalent to 27% of the company’s profits. Owners of LEO tokens save commissions on Bitfinex, get discounts on monthly fees, and also get discounts on withdrawal and deposit fees for cryptocurrencies. The amounts vary depending on how much LEO you hold, but you can save fees by holding just 2 LEO, with greater benefits when you hold over 5000 or over 10,000.
Bitfinex Frequently Asked Questions
No, Bitfinex is not a good place to get started with crypto. This is because they only accept bank wire and other crypto as funding methods, there is no way to instantly buy crypto and start trading. There are many other exchanges that are better suited for beginners such as Coinbase.
No, you are not able to trade gold and silver on Bitfinex.
In 2016 Bitfinex was hacked for 120k Bitcoins. They were able to reimburse affected customers within 8 months and were quite transparent about the incident. But they were hacked before that as well, in 2015, they lost 1500 Bitcoins, though that incident is a little murky as far as what actually transpired. As a result of the hacks they have become much more security conscious than they were before and have not been hacked since.
Bitfinex and its parent company iFInex Inc. are based out of Hong Kong. iFinex Inc. is also the parent company of Tether (USDT).
No, Bitfinex is not a decentralized exchange.
No, as a result of a recent change by the trading platform in order to focus on their other customers, US residents can no longer use Bitfinex.