The Best Crypto Margin Trading Exchanges 2021
Making Crypto Simple
Even though there’s a great appeal to crypto margin trading, you have to be very careful as your success always hangs in the balance. Even a small price movement in the opposite direction can lead to serious losses of your initial capital. Therefore, don’t invest more than you can afford to lose.
If you’re still interested in margin trading, read further to learn about the most popular crypto margin platforms.
|Exchange Website||Rating||Currencies||Available Cryptocurrencies||Fees||Our Review||Visit Site|
|5/5||USD & 40 Others||10+ Cryptocurrencies||0.075%||Bybit Review||Visit Site|
|4/5||42+ Currencies||100+ Cryptocurrencies||0.1%||Binance Review||Visit Site|
|3.5/5||USD & Others||50+ Cryptocurrencies||0.26%||Kraken Review||Visit Site|
|3/5||EUR & Others||90+ Cryptocurrencies||Daily Fees||eToro Review||Visit Site|
|3/5||USD & Others||100+ Cryptocurrencies||0.2%||Bitfinex Review||Visit Site|
|2.5/5||USD & 6 Others||200+ Cryptocurrencies||0.075%||Visit Site|
|2.5/5||Crypto Only||2 Cryptocurrencies||0.05%||Visit Site|
|2/5||Crypto Only||10+ Cryptocurrencies||0.06%||Visit Site|
|2/5||Crypto Only||5+ Cryptocurrencies||0.05%||Visit Site|
|2/5||Crypto Only||21+ Cryptocurrencies||0.075%||Visit Site|
The Best Cryptocurrency Margin Trading Platforms – Reviews 2021
1. Bybit Exchange
Bybit is the number-one crypto margin trading exchange on a global level. The platform has already been used by over one million clients worldwide even though it’s been around for barely three years. Bybit was launched in 2018 and headquartered in Singapore, with offices in Taiwan and Hong Kong. The platform is registered in the British Virgin Island.
One of the best things about this exchange is that it can process up to 100,000 transactions per second! That’s way better than its competitors, BitMEX and Deribit. Moreover, unlike most platforms where you have to perform mandatory KYC (Know Your Customer) checks and verify your identity, Bybit only asks for an email address, protecting users’ privacy.
On Bybit, you can deposit fiat to purchase Bitcoin (BTC), Ethereum (ETH), or Tether (USDT). As for margin trading, Bybit offers two types of contracts: Perpetual or Inverse and USDT Contracts. The former have USD as their base currency, while the latter use USDT instead.
Here’s the Perpetual Contracts fee schedule for all the available cryptocurrencies:
|Perpetual Contracts||Maximum Leverage||Maker’s Rebate||Taker’s Fee|
For USDT Contracts, the maximum leverage is 100x. The following crypto assets are traded against USDT: BTC, ETH, LINK, XTZ, and LTC. The margin is 1% of the notional value and you get to adjust the leverage even after you’ve opened your position.
Unfortunately, Bybit isn’t available in the United States due to local regulatory laws.
2. Binance Exchange
The second exchange on our list might not be the most famous margin trading platform but it definitely towers the charts with some of the highest daily trading volumes. Binance is a global crypto trading platform with headquarters in Malta, launched by software developer Changpeng Zhao.
Whether you’re a beginner or a seasoned trader, Binance has it all! It’s the perfect altcoin exchange as it supports a range of cryptocurrencies, including the most prominent ones and some underrated tokens too.
Binance supports over 30 fiat currencies, so if you want to buy these assets with your native coin, chances are there will be zero conversion fees. You can make deposits via regular bank transfers or use your VISA debit/credit card instead. To top it off, Binance charges an incredible 0.1% flat fee regardless of the trade amount and has an additional discount for BNB holders.
However, if margin trading is the only thing that interests you, you’d be thrilled to learn that Binance has added 17 cryptocurrencies to its list of margin trading pairs to be traded against BTC or USDT. The lack of crypto to fiat pairs is Binance’s only weakness.
To start trading margin, you simply need to transfer assets from your Binance Wallet to your Margin Trading Wallet on your newly-created Margin Account and use them as collateral. The maximum leverage is 5x which means that if you deposit 5 BTC, you can borrow 20 BTC.
3. Kraken Exchange
Kraken is a crypto veteran exchange, founded only two years after Bitcoin’s launch by cybersecurity expert and software developer, Jesse Powell. Prior to Kraken, Powell has worked in the crypto industry, helping other platforms stay on top of cybersecurity threats.
Apart from a couple of restricted countries due to differences in regulatory frameworks (which covers Washington State and New York as well), Kraken has no other geographical restrictions. You can join the platform to buy, sell, or trade an exhaustive range of crypto assets in exchange for seven fiat currencies: EUR, USD, CAD, GBP, JPY, AUD, and CHF.
On Kraken, you can add a margin to your market and limit orders with a 2:1 or 5:1 ratio. The platform has an intuitive user interface and gives you the option to go short or long on 16 digital currencies: BTC, ETH, BCH, ETC, XRP, USDT, LTC, XMR, Augur (REP), Tezos (XTZ), ADA, DASH, LINK, EOS, TRX, and USDC.
Of course, this type of service doesn’t come for free. Based on the trading pair you choose, Kraken charges up to 0.02% for an open position and incurs additional rollover fees (also up to 0.02%) to keep your position open and back it up with its deep liquidity.
4. eToro Exchange
eToro is a world-famous financial broker with a long-standing history. The platform was created in 2007 and has since then offered all sorts of financial and trading services to over 13 million traders. eToro is a pioneer of social and copy trading and the first exchange on our list to offer margin trading – first on other asset groups, and later on cryptos as well.
If security is your top priority, look no further as eToro has a license from four different international financial authorities: FCA, CySEX, FinCEN, and ASIC. This means that the broker has to comply with their AML and CFT policies if it wants to operate within these jurisdictions.
Although eToro lacks broader altcoin support compared to some of our other favorites, it still includes 16 top-rated tokens: BTC, ETH, BCH, XRP, LTC, XLM, ETC, DASH, ADA, EOS, NEO, IOTA, TRX, ZEC, BNB, and XTZ.
At first, you could only purchase crypto CFDs, meaning that you didn’t actually own the asset but instead agreed to pay the difference in price if the price fell down, or earn the difference if the price went up. However, from 2018, eToro users can purchase cryptocurrencies and store them in the eToro digital wallet.
Those interested in margin trading can select one of these tokens and trade them at 2x leverage and boost the gain if the trade proves profitable.
5. Bitfinex Exchange
Bitfinex became available to the public in 2012. It was originally designed and managed by Raphael Nicolle and based in Hong Kong. Today, the platform is led by JL van der Velde (CEO) and Giancarlo Devasini (CFO).
This altcoin exchange supports all sorts of digital currencies, stablecoins, and DeFi tokens that can be bought with crypto or fiat (USD, EUR, GBP, or JPY). Thanks to its partnership with third-party payment providers OWNR and Mercuryo, Bitfinex allows its clients to make deposits via bank or wire transfers, or use their debit card.
The average deposit fee is 0.1%, while the highest trading fee is 0.1% for makers and 0.2% for takers. Bitfinex offers some advanced trading features like staking, lending, and up to 5x leverage which gives your investment five times the earning potential.
Margin traders can choose between customizing their order or allowing Bitfinex to find the most attractive offer for them. In the first case, they need to specify the amount they want to borrow and the order duration. Another reason why we like Bitfinex is that it includes 25 cryptocurrencies to its margin offer.
As a result of regulatory roadblocks, the platform is no longer available in the US.
6. Poloniex Exchange
The next cryptocurrency platform on our list is another crypto market favorite, Poloniex. This exchange was founded in 2014 by Tristan D’Agosta and was originally located in Wilmington, Delaware. Poloniex got off to a flying start with its user base and trading volumes but quickly ran into some difficulties.
Namely, users filed complaints about the lack of customer support and unreasonably long wait times. Also, there were cases where their accounts would be suspended under suspicious trading activity allegations. Moreover, Poloniex experienced serious security breaches.
Finally, in 2019, the platform was acquired by Circle and began its rebranding. Poloniex added mandatory KYC checks to adhere to local regulatory frameworks and delisted more than half of its supported tokens either due to lack of liquidity and demand or because they turned out to be scam coins.
Still, Poloniex has an attractive margin trade feature unlike any other we’ve learned about today. The feature is called Peer to Peer Margin Lending and Borrowing Scheme. The way it works is that you choose one of the 16 available cryptocurrencies to trade against BTC, USDT, or USDC. Trading accounts are eligible for 2.5x leverage. You can borrow funds or lend them as well. Crypto traders who lend their assets earn a 15% interest.
7. Deribit Exchange
Deribit was co-founded by John Jansen, Sebastian Smyczýnski, and Marius Jansen in 2016. This stellar team of experts has slowly been turning this small Dutch exchange into a global Bitcoin futures and options trading sensation. However, Deribit is still an unregulated broker on paper due to the lack of a unified regulatory framework across Europe.
If you’re interested in altcoins, Deribit wouldn’t suit your trading needs as the platform only supports Bitcoin and Ethereum for now. In fact, all transactions are processed in BTC only. On the other hand, this allows Deribit to provide a range of trading options for these two coins.
For instance, you can place order types such as limit, stop market, stop loss, or stop-limit to minimize your losses. You can set your leverage as high as 100x for Bitcoin or 50x for Ethereum. Still, we only recommend higher ratios for experienced traders.
Deribit lacks a fiat gateway so it only accepts BTC deposits of no less than 0.001 BTC. This shouldn’t bother advanced traders as they probably already own some bitcoins. Plus, Deribit lets them enjoy a range of technical indicators, volatility charts, automated trading bot integration, and practice margin trading strategies on the platform’s testnet.
8. BaseFEX Exchange
BaseFEX is yet another cryptocurrency exchange based in Hong Kong that went viral in 2018. The main idea behind its founders was to make cryptocurrency trading faster and safer for traders worldwide.
One way to do this has been by decreasing server overload and devising a robust security interface. For instance, BaseFEX stores 100% of all user and operational funds offline in multi-signature cold storage. Moreover, users can activate two-factor authentication and an anti-phishing code. Platform-wise, the exchange uses SSL encryption and hashed passwords.
BaseFEX is considered to be a beginner-friendly exchange, with a minimalist, clutter-free user interface. If you feel knowledgeable enough, you can choose a more advanced interface with lots of technical indicators and TradingView charts. You can combine these features when executing a margin trading order.
You can use as much as 100x leverage on Bitcoin and up to 20x leverage on the remaining altcoins (ETH, LTC, BCH, XRP, and BNB). The supported Bitcoin trading pairs are BTC/USD and BTC/USDT. Altcoins can only be traded against BTC.
9. PrimeXBT Exchange
PrimeXBT is another financial broker and well-known margin trading venue on our list. The platform was launched in 2018 with offices in Seychelles, St. Vincent and the Grenadines. You can use its services in more than 150 countries worldwide except for a few blacklisted countries (e.g. Iran, North Korea, Quebec, and unfortunately the US).
This broker offers unique trading services with maximum anonymity and velocity (up to 12,000 transactions per second!). You can choose between the following asset groups and financial instruments: forex, CFDs, commodities (crude oil, natural gas, gold, and silver), indices, S&P 500, NASDAQ, FTSE100, JAPAN, and cryptocurrencies. PrimeXBT supports BTC, ETH, LTC, XRP, and EOS. However, traders can only deposit Bitcoin and then trade them in exchange for other tokens.
As for margin trading, PrimeXBT is perfect for those of you who want to take advantage of both upward and downward price movements. The maximum leverage is 100x for all cryptocurrencies but the rollover fees differ from one token to the next. You can choose from the following trading pairs: BTC/USD, ETH/USD, ETH/BTC, LTC/USD, LTC/BTC, EOS/USD, and EOS/BTC.
Despite the prevalence of advanced trading services, PrimeXBT has a user-friendly interface and can be used by novices and experts alike.
10. BitMEX Exchange
If you’ve had some previous experience in margin trading, you might be surprised to find BitMEX in the last place on our list. BitMEX, or Bitcoin Mercantile Exchange, is one of the pioneers in crypto margin trading, popular among traders all over the world.
However, in October 2020, its founders were indicted by US Federal Prosecutors and found guilty for violating the Bank Secrecy Act and allowing US citizens to use the platform. BitMEX applied no KYC checks and therefore, US traders could register for an account and stay under the radar.
The exchange quickly appointed Alexander Höptner as its new CEO who now promises to make peace with global regulators and expand BitMEX’s offers by introducing spot trading, brokerage, and custody services.
So, what used to make BitMEX so special when it comes to crypto margin trading? First of all, BitMEX actually offers margin trading on derivative contracts. What this means is that you trade BTC against fiat or crypto contracts instead of the actual currencies, as the price of these contracts is tethered to that of the underlying assets they represent.
Moreover, BitMEX offers 100x leverage on Bitcoin, supports other popular coins like BCH, ETH, ADA, LTC, and XRP, and charges reasonable fees. Take a look at the margin trading fee schedule to see for yourselves:
|Cryptocurrencies||Leverage||Maker fee||Taker fee|
|Bitcoin Cash (BCH)||20x||-0.0500%||0.2500%|
For now, it remains to be seen whether BitMEX will manage to make ground once again.
Anyone who’s been part of the financial market long enough must have come across a trading practice known as margin trading. Best-loved by thrill-seeking investors who enjoy a high risk to reward ratio, margin trading is a tool that can drastically increase your profits when done the right way.
Seeing how cryptocurrencies are a naturally volatile asset class, it hardly comes as a surprise that the popularity of crypto margin trading is on the rise. When a trader predicts that the digital asset in question is bound for a rally or a long-term bullish market, their first thought is to open a leveraged position and invest more.
In our guide today, we’ll get acquainted with the basics behind this trading practice and discuss the ten best crypto margin trading exchanges worldwide.
What’s Margin Trading?
On the financial market, margin trading refers to trading any asset group with borrowed funds. Typically, you would borrow funds from a broker by providing an initial deposit that acts as your collateral. This type of trading allows you to increase your profits but at the same time increases the risk of loss too.
Cryptocurrency margin trading follows the same pattern. However, instead of borrowing funds from a broker, here, the crypto exchange finds a potential lender for you. Margin lenders are traders who lend money to the exchange in return for a small interest rate that provides them with passive income. In some rare cases, margin traders borrow funds directly from the exchange itself.
As mentioned above, to make your first trade, you need to make an initial investment or deposit known as margin and held as collateral. The margin is calculated based on the total amount you want to borrow. Leverage, on the other hand, refers to the borrowed funds and margin ratio and depends on the rules and limits set by the exchange itself.
This ratio is more or less the same within one asset class. Cryptocurrencies have smaller leverage compared to other asset classes like forex trades, for example, which reach up to 1000x leverage. The most common crypto margin ratio is between 2:1 and 100:1 or between 2x and 100x leverage.
Next, you should know the difference between the two different types of margin trading options: long and short. If you open a long position, it means you anticipate a rise in the price of the asset you’re investing in. Shorting, on the other hand, is when you open a short position, as you believe the asset will drop in price.
Frequently Asked Questions
Whatever crypto margin trading exchange you choose from our list, you’ll be able to choose Bitcoin as your target currency. If you want to make the most out of your leveraged position, we suggest you use Bybit or PrimeXBT as they both offer as much as 100x on margin trading. Both platforms are highly secure and reliable and charge industry average fees.
The main difference is that on Bybit, you can choose between perpetual and USDT contracts, whereas BitMEX focuses on all sorts of financial assets. Unfortunately, none of these platforms can be used in the States at the moment.
These global crypto exchanges are both affordable and reliable, and all in all a rare market find! Moreover, Kraken can be used by US traders as well.
When you’re new to margin trading, you might have trouble distinguishing between margin and leverage. Margin refers to the debt you’re taking or the money you’re borrowing at a given interest rate in order to capitalize on the potential reward in the future. Leverage, on the other hand, refers to the process of taking that debt at a predetermined ratio.