BTC Markets – One of Australia’s Best Fiat>Crypto Exchanges
Founded in 2013, BTC Markets is one of cryptocurrency’s old guard. In the intervening years between its genesis and the present day, dozens of similar exchanges have come and gone. Still going strong, BTC Markets continues to offer value to its customers, and is especially competitive in the Australian market, where it is based.
BTC Markets is a reliable way for users of the Australian Dollar to buy the world’s largest cryptocurrencies. Users can also transfer supported digital currencies to the platform and trade them for other cryptocurrencies. Rates for deposits, withdrawals, and trading are reasonable and competitive, even as the cryptocurrency exchange market becomes more crowded.
In the BTC Markets review to come, we’ll try to answer all of your questions about this solid trading platform, so you can decide whether or not it’s the exchange for you.
What is BTC Markets?
BTC Markets is what it says it is: markets where Bitcoin can be bought and sold in a few different ways. This isn’t all that BTC Markets is, however. Over the years, the company has started to support a growing list of important cryptocurrencies. As of the time of this writing, these include Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Ethereum, Ethereum Classic, Ripple, and Litecoin. All of these can be intertraded, as well as directly sold for Australian Dollars.
BTC Markets isn’t complicated. They want to be a place where users feel comfortable buying cryptocurrency for the first time, and where more advanced traders can nonetheless derive value. BTC Markets’ basic order principles are simple, but they have API options that sophisticated users can employ to create automated trading. Similarly, BTC Markets creates a channel that’s very non-threatening for the new initiate, but they don’t charge out the wazoo like similar competitors (Coinbase comes to mind).
BTC Markets is only available for residents of Australia. This makes it impossible for outside users to take part, of course, but we think it’s part of BTC Markets’ larger strategy to keep their scope narrow and execute well, rather than trying to be everything to everybody and letting details fall through the cracks in the process. We like this strategy, but if BTC Markets’ Australia coverage base leaves you out in the cold, we’ll show you an alternative that’s similarly suited for beginners and experts alike.
eToro – For Crypto Investors Outside Australia (and Within)
As we’ve already noted, BTC Markets is great for users of various sophistication levels, and it’s pretty affordable to boot. But unfortunately for many of us, BTC Markets is only available in Australia. To be fair, few crypto exchanges are truly universal, and those which are typically operate in something of a grey area, with regard to various international regulatory frameworks. These exchanges can be quite good, but we typically find that it’s better to work with highly trusted, regulated sources, especially when you’re putting a lot of cash into the game.
eToro is a great example of how to do just that. eToro has a totally different investment model compared to BTC Markets. It’s also easier to use and more widely available than BTC Markets (though not available in the US). We’ll explain the key differences and you can decide for yourself which model is best for you.
- BTC Markets sells cryptocurrency; eToro merely facilitates asset value speculation. The BTC Markets model is well known: a user buys coins, has the coins sent to their digital wallet, and then stores those coins until she wishes to spend them, trade them, or cash them out. eToro doesn’t sell the user tangible assets. When a user “buys” $5,000 in Bitcoin, she is simply locking this cash into a contract held on eToro. The contract states that the user has the profit rights to $5,000 worth of Bitcoin. If and when the user decides to end the contract, profits and losses will then be determined. If the user ends the contract when her Bitcoin has gained $1,000 in value, she will walk away with $6,000 (minus fees). If the price was lower at the time of contract resolution, losses will be pulled from the original balance.
- BTC Markets requires a certain amount of independence from the user. Even though it’s easy by cryptocurrency exchange standards, the vast majority of the consumer population will still be mystified by it. Users have to download third party applications (digital wallets) to store their coins on after purchase. They have to write their own transactions, which some people mess up, resulting in loss of funds. All of this is doable, but it’s certainly not “idiot proof” (not that you all aren’t brilliant, lovely people). eToro, on the other hand, does everything for the user. There are no coins to move off-site. There are no address codes, private keys, or digital wallets. You use the simple trading interfaces, log out, and go about your day. Users with tech savvy can profit, of course, but so can the average Facebook user.
- eToro offers leveraged positions, and BTC Markets doesn’t. Leverage is a powerful financial resource, whereby a broker will give you access to several multiples of your available capital. With up to 5X leverage, a user with $1,000 deposited on eToro could “Buy” up to $5,000 of one or more cryptocurrencies. This creates a great deal of profit potential, though multiplied losses are an important consideration, especially for new traders.
- BTC Markets has only six cryptocurrencies, while eToro has ten. eToro has all of the coins BTC Markets does (Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Ethereum, Ethereum Classic, Litecoin, and Ripple), with the addition of some high quality coins of more recent vintage (NEO, EOS, Stellar Lumens, and Dash). At least 3 of those 4 have remarkably good prospects in 2018 and beyond, and users will definitely be glad of the option to trade them on eToro’s simple platform.
As you can see, there are some big differences between BTC Markets and eToro, the latter of which may offer greater simplicity and more possibilities, for new and experienced users alike. We also believe that inexperienced traders will have less difficulty and greater chance for success when using eToro, though BTC Markets is still a strong option for people prepared to learn the ropes.
How to Sign Up With BTC Markets
Back to BTC Markets and BTC Markets alone. Let’s say you are an Australian flush with Australian Dollars and chomping at the bit to get some of that sweet, sweet Bitcoin. You’ve chosen BTC Markets. Here’s what you do next.
Go to BTCMarkets.net, click “sign up”, and follow the prompts. BTC Markets will ask for various personal identifying information. They do this because they have to. BTC Markets can be hooked up straight to your bank. This gives BTC Markets a great deal of power, and their users a new way to use money, a system which global financial powers still don’t fully comprehend. The powers that be can’t be having fly-by-night exchange operations moving billions of dollars without knowing who their customers are. This prevents fraud and money laundering.
We know it sucks to give up personal information online, especially with our world history of data hacks. But working with a well regulated exchange like this also gives the user the peace of mind that their funds are in relatively safe hands.
Once you’re through the verification process, you can immediately enjoy the trading process. Sometimes when demand is high, BTC Markets can’t add new users very quickly, so some users report waiting days or weeks for their new account request to be accepted. If this is the case for you, just be patient. You’ll hear back soon enough.
Making Trades on BTC Markets
The BTC Markets trading screen is about as simple as it gets. As you can see in the image above, on the basic trading screen there just isn’t that much to clutter up the process. You see a simple chart that shows recent price action and volume. Above, you see recent price statistics regarding the value of individual assets. And at the bottom, you see Buy and Sell mini-interfaces.
The Buy option on the left already has the market price of your chosen crypto filled in. In this way, BTC Markets is much like Coinbase. The company tells you what the price is and you can choose to spend exactly that or walk away. However, BTC Markets also has a limit order option, which the customer can use to make an order at a cheaper price. Of course, the order will only be filled if and when the price of the coin drops to that level. It’s just a sure thing, but it can be a great way to pick up coins at great prices, if you’re patient.
Remember, once your coins are delivered to your BTC Markets wallet, always move them to an external digital wallet which you control. BTC Markets aren’t meant to store coins safely forever.
BTC Markets Fees
For many traders, this is where the rubber meets the road. We can’t use a trading method if it’s too expensive. Fortunately, BTC Markets stacks up pretty well in the cost department, though they are by no means the cheapest option out there. Still, if you’re using the service because they take Australian Dollars in exchange for solid crypto projects, you may just use them for their broader trading services even if you could technically find a cheaper option elsewhere.
Basic trading of one cryptocurrency for another (BTC/BCH, for example) is a simple 0.22% for makers and takers. This is a bit high compared to the average exchange, and some options like Binance‘s discounted trading (0.05%) are significantly cheaper. It’s BTC Markets’ fiat>crypto trading pairs (AUD/BTC, for example) where the affordability is really seen. These start at 0.85% and work their way down to 0.10% for very high volume traders.
Compare this to Coinbase’s 3.99% starting fee, and you’ll see that BTC Markets really is a strong player for fiat>crypto trades. Very often, nationally focused cryptocurrency exchanges have higher fees than ones which appeal to a broader international community. We’re pleased to see that BTC Markets keeps costs low, even when they’re just available for Australians.
BTC Markets Security Standards
BTC Markets is a pretty secure Bitcoin exchange, by all appearances. The company has no major hacking scandals. They also offer users the standard password/2 Factor Authentication option that works so well for many. Furthermore, they store funds in cold storage (offline) as much as possible to prevent theft, while checking multiple times daily that enough funds are available through the platform so as to maintain liquidity.
There is no absolutely secure exchange, and that’s why we urge our readers to make sure to store purchased coins in their own personal digital wallets. But to its credit, BTC Markets seems to be very reliable in this regard.
Final Thoughts on BTC Markets
At the end of the day, BTC Markets is a very strong option for buying cryptocurrency with Australian Dollars. The site is less competitive in crypto>crypto trades, simply because their costs are higher than what you can find elsewhere. But as far as the platform itself is concerned, users can’t hope for a whole lot better.
BTC Markets is intuitive, free of superfluous features, and well suited to the needs of new users, as well as those who are more experienced. We think that users who give it a try, even without outside experience, will learn how to use it without difficulty. For those who do experience issues, customer service is available Monday thru Friday.
We’re glad that excellent exchange options exist for specific nations, and BTC Markets is a prime example. This is an exchange that doesn’t try to be the biggest and the best. Instead they prioritize excellent service for a relatively niche market, with no signs of stopping anytime soon.