Bitfinex is a major cryptocurrency exchange that is hugely popular with online traders. The platform is often accustomed to some of the largest daily trading volumes in the industry. In most cases, Bitfinex is best suited for the more experienced trader, due to its advanced trading tools.
If you’re thinking about opening an account with Bitfinex, make sure you read our review first. We’ll cover everything from fees, regulation, supported coins, security, and more.
If you don’t have time to read our review, we concluded by stating that we cannot endorse Bitfinex, as the platform is not suitable for beginners, debit/credit cards and e-wallets aren’t accepted, and the fact that the exchange was hacked in 2015 and 2016. Instead, we prefer heavily regulated platforms like Coinbase, who make it super easy to buy and sell crypto, multiple payment methods are supported, security is water-tight, and you can even trade on-the-move via the mobile app.
What is Bitfinex?
Bitfinex is a leading cryptocurrency exchange that allows users to buy, sell and trade a full range of digital coins. The platform was first launched in 2012 and is based in Hong Kong.
The trading area at Bitfinex is most commonly used by intermediate or expert traders, as the platform offers a good selection of chart analysis tools. In terms of depositing and withdrawing funds, the only payment method supported is a bank transfer, other than cryptocurrencies.
Alongside the likes of Coinbase, Bitfinex is one of the few platforms that allows you to short cryptocurrencies and implement leverage trading strategies.
How does Bitfinex Work?
Bitfinex is a third party cryptocurrency exchange, and as such, matches buyers and sellers together. To gain access to the platform, you need to open an account and deposit funds. Once your account is funded, you can purchase over 100 coins, which is great for those that want a diverse portfolio.
If you’re looking to hold onto your cryptocurrencies as a long-term investment, then you have the option of either storing the coins in your Bitfinex account online or withdrawing them to a private wallet (recommended).
What cryptocurrencies does Bitfinex support?
Which countries does Bitfinex support?
Bitfinex is a worldwide cryptocurrency exchange that supports the vast majority of countries. However, alongside four other nations, it must be noted that those from the U.S. cannot use the services of Bitfinex.
🚫 United States
If you’re based in the U.S., then you can access all of the same exchange services offered by Bitfinex at Coinbase.
Bitfinex Payment Methods and Fees
💳 Bank Wire
Deposit fees and limits
If you choose to deposit funds into your Bitfinex account via a bank transfer, then you will pay a fixed fee of 0.1%. For example, if you deposit $10,000, you will pay a fee of $10. If you instead deposit by cryptocurrency, then you’ll pay a small fee, which is dependant on the specific coin you find your account with.
In terms of withdrawal fees, you’ll also pay 0.1% if you want to cash-out via bank wire. If you need your funds within 24 hours, you can pay a 1% express fee. Alternatively, cryptocurrency withdrawal fees vary depending on the coin.
Bitfinex offers a trading fee structure that is based on whether you are a market taker or market maker, and how much you trade in a single month. As you’ll see below, unless you trade more than $500,000 per month, as a taker you will pay a huge 0.2% in fees. This is considerably higher than other leading cryptocurrency exchanges such as Coinbase, who only charge users via the spread.
How to sign up and trade on Bitfinex
Because Bitfinex charges really high fees, is not user-friendly, does not accept U.S. traders and was hacked in 2015 and 2016, we would suggest re-thinking your plan to open an account. However, if you want to proceed, follow our simple step-by-step guide below.
Step 1. Open an account with Bitfinex
Head over to the Bitfinex homepage, click on ‘SIGN UP’ and then enter your email address, which you’ll need to confirm.
You also need to choose a username and a strong password.
Step 2. Verify your identity
If you want to deposit funds via a bank transfer, then you’ll need to verify your identity. Click on the verification button within your account portal, and follow the on-screen instructions. You’ll need to enter a range of personal information, and then upload a copy of some government-issued ID.
Step 3. Deposit funds
Once your Bitfinex account has been verified, click on the ‘DEPOSIT’ button, which you’ll find at the top right-hand side of the screen.
Choose which currency you want to deposit with (EUR/USD/GBP/YEN) and then you will be provided with the bank account details that you need to transfer the funds to, as well as your reference number. Be warned, this can take up to 10 days to process, meaning that you’ll need to wait before you can start trading.
Step 4. Trade
Once your account is funded, you can then begin day trading at Bitfinex. Click on the ‘TRADING’ button at the top of the screen, and you will be taken to the main trading area. You now need to select the trading pair that you want to trade.
Finally, enter the amount that you want to buy, decide whether you want to do a ‘market order’ or ‘limit order’, and then place your trade.
Is Bitfinex regulated?
Bitfinex is not regulated. The company is registered in the British Virgin Islands and operates in Hong Kong. As such, you should tread with caution. Other options do exist in the cryptocurrency space such as Coinbase, who are regulated by the UK’s FCA and CySEC in Cyprus.
Is Bitfinex safe?
On top of not being regulated, safety at Bitfinex is also a major concern of ours, not least because the platform experienced a major hack in 2015. Just one year later, the platform was hacked again, this time resulting in the theft of more than 120,000 Bitcoin. While this amounted to $72 million in 2016, at today’s rate this amounts to approximately $600 million.
In order to keep customer funds safe, Bitfinex offers the following security features.
🔒Two-factor authentication (not enforced)
🔒99.5% of customer funds held in cold storage
🔒IP address whitelists
🔒On-site security team
These hacks, alongside an unregulated status, means that we cannot endorse Bitfinex. We would instead suggest Coinbase if you want a regulated crypto exchange that keeps customer funds safe.
Does Bitfinex have a wallet?
The Bitfinex wallet is essentially a third party online wallet, meaning that you do not have control of your private keys. This means that if Bitfinex were hacked again, then your funds are largely at risk. If you do decide to use Bitfinex, then you are better off withdrawing your coins to a private wallet.
Does Bitfinex have an app?
Bitfinex offers a native mobile app on both Google Play and the iTunes Store, free of charge. The app allows you to trade, access your wallet, fund your account, receive notifications and check your transaction history.
Bitfinex customer service
Although the Bitfinex support team operates 24/7, you can only contact the team via email. This means that instant support is not available at Bitfinex. The exchange does post regular updates on Twitter, so you might be able to contact a support agent there.
❌ No phone support
❌ No live chat
Bitfinex pros and cons
✅Established since 2012
✅Suited for advanced traders
✅ Over 100 supported coins.
✅ Accepts bank wire deposits and withdrawals
❌ U.S. citizens not accepted
❌ Not regulated
❌ High trading fees
❌ Hacked on more than one occasion
❌ No debit/credit card or e-wallet deposits
❌ Support team only available via email
In summary, Bitfinex has one of the most comprehensive listings of supported coins, subsequently allowing you to buy and sell more than 100 different cryptocurrencies. Moreover, if you are an advanced trader that likes to use top-grade charting analysis tools with significant volumes of liquidity, then Bitfinex might suffice.
However, we are unable to endorse Bitfinex as a notable cryptocurrency exchange as the trading fees are really high. Unless you trade $500,000 per month, you’ll end up paying 0.2% for every trade you make. On top of high fees, it is also frustrating that you can only deposit fiat money via a bank transfer. We are also concerned that the exchange operates unregulated and that it has been in receipt of multiple major hacks.
If you are yet to open an account at Bitfinex, we would instead suggest using Coinbase. They are regulated by both the FCA and CySEC, offer multiple fiat currency deposit options, and the only trading fees you pay is via the spread.
Bitfinex offers more than 100 different cryptocurrencies. Much like Coinbase, Bitfinex is one of the few exchange platforms that allows you to short Bitcoin. The only support option available at Bitfinex is email. Trading fees depend on how much you trade per month, and whether you are a market taker or market maker. If you trade below $500,000 per month and are a market taker, you’ll pay 0.2% per trade. Bitfinex is best designed for intermediate or advanced traders. If you are just starting out in the crypto trading space, Bitfinex might not be suitable. You will need to verify your identity if you want to deposit and withdraw funds via bank wire. This will require you to upload a copy of your government issued ID. Unfortunately not. If you want to deposit and withdraw funds via fiat money, then the only option available to use is a bank wire. However, this can take up to 10 days for the funds to appear in your account. Bitfinex does offer leverage on some of its cryptocurrencies. Contents
Bitfinex offers more than 100 different cryptocurrencies.
Much like Coinbase, Bitfinex is one of the few exchange platforms that allows you to short Bitcoin.
The only support option available at Bitfinex is email.
Trading fees depend on how much you trade per month, and whether you are a market taker or market maker. If you trade below $500,000 per month and are a market taker, you’ll pay 0.2% per trade.
Bitfinex is best designed for intermediate or advanced traders. If you are just starting out in the crypto trading space, Bitfinex might not be suitable.
You will need to verify your identity if you want to deposit and withdraw funds via bank wire. This will require you to upload a copy of your government issued ID.
Unfortunately not. If you want to deposit and withdraw funds via fiat money, then the only option available to use is a bank wire. However, this can take up to 10 days for the funds to appear in your account.
Bitfinex does offer leverage on some of its cryptocurrencies.