BitMEX is a peer-to-peer exchange that appeared in 2014 and quickly established itself as a top-level platform for crypto trading. Operated by HDR Global Trading, the exchange has operational centres across the globe and offers investors access to sophisticated derivative trading products, such as perpetual contracts and futures contracts for cryptocurrencies using bitcoin as a primary funding option. New traders should be aware that BitMEX is a trading platform rather than a buying platform – meaning that users effectively profit by making good trades but do not actually own underlying assets. The following BitMEX exchange review is intended to give you a solid overview of the platform.
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For traders considering switching to a new exchange user, arguably the most important part of this review will be an assessment of the overall usability and feel of the platform itself.
BitMEX is renowned for its extensive range of professional tools, which is great for experienced traders but, at first glance, the platform’s interface can be a little overwhelming to the average user. That being said, our BitMEX exchange review found plenty of options to allow users to change, add or remove widgets based on their individual preferences. BitMEX also uses TradingView for its charting, an industry mainstay that offers clear and easy to read information.
Of course, traders using BitMEX can review and monitor their activity at the touch of a button. Cancelling orders is also extremely easy to do via the active orders tab. It is worth noting, however, that due to the more complex nature of trading, BitMEX futures and the amount of information the platform presents, it is very much optimised for desktop use only. Overall we found the BitMex trading platform to be intuitive and user friendly, but it can take a little longer to get to grips with than more basic platforms on the market.
The next factor considered in our BitMEX exchange review is the platform’s approach to processing payments, deposits and withdrawals. As has already been mentioned, BitMEX only accepts deposits in Bitcoin, which in turn is the collateral on trading contracts, whether the trade involves the currency directly or not.
There are no fees for depositing or withdrawing with the platform itself but when withdrawing Bitcoin, the minimum network fee is applied. There is also a BitMEX minimum deposit rule of 0.001 BTC. There is no BitMEX withdrawal limit. You can make deposits to your account 24/7, but due to the way withdrawals are processed they are only actioned once per day – withdrawals are made via manual process to allow BitMEX to flag any unusual requests and offer greater protection for users.
Whilst it is often overlooked as a key feature of trading platforms, any exchange review worth its salt should consider the customer service levels on offer – after all, the often complex nature of bitcoin trading can leave even the most experienced investor needing assistance.
BitMEX really offers a reasonably comprehensive customer support service. Assistance is available 24/7 via several different channels, including email and social media, with average response times being approximately one hour. Many users have also lauded the helpful nature of responses, which aren’t limited to generic bot chat or automated replies. The platform also offers a reasonably comprehensive knowledge base and FAQ.
The international reach of BitMEX is also reflected in the language in which it offers support, namely English, Chinese, Russian, Korean, and Japanese. It’s possible BitMEX will review or expand its language support in future.
Is BitMEX safe? Security is inevitably a big concern for crypto investors and thus forms a key part of this BitMEX exchange review. The platform actually faced some criticism last year after revealing emails of registered users. Naturally, this rings alarm bells but if anything the firm has bounced back with stronger security protocols than many of its competitors as the incident prompted BitMEX to enact a complete overhaul of its processes and security. Our BitMEX exchange review also notes that there have been no recorded BitMEX scams and the data breach was due to operational error.
Our BitMEX review found the platform now incorporates a number of security protocols, utilising the world-class security of Amazon Web Services. All of the systems and user interfaces employ multiple stages of authentication and different systems only send information to and from each other view secure, SSL-encrypted channels. The platform also offers additional encryption for email communications – including the option for PGP encryption.
Naturally, a key factor for any exchange review is which currencies the platform supports. BitMEX is slightly restrictive when it comes to funding your account, especially when compared to many other trading platforms on the market, as users can only deposit with Bitcoin, which is then the only currency supported for trading. However, BitMEX specialises in the exchange of derivative trading assets for cryptocurrencies, meaning users can enter into perpetual and futures contracts to trade bitcoin against other commodities in the global financial markets – including other cryptocurrencies.
Once Bitcoin has been deposited, it can be used as a method to purchase other cryptos via CFDs, including many of the most well-known coins such as Dash, Ethereum, Litecoin, Ripple and Bitcoin Cash. Those interested in using BitMEX can check out the full list of contracts available on the website. The platform offers leveraged trading on all contracts, but we found that the amount of leverage differs between available currencies.
It is more than likely that BitMEX will update the contracts available periodically, so if there is a particular cryptocurrency that you are interested in it always makes sense to check the current contracts on offer.
Of course, another key facet of our BitMEX exchange review is a look at the fee structure. The good news is that BitMEX only operates with Bitcoin as a denomination, so there are no BitMEX withdrawal fees and only a nominal minimum deposit.
When it comes to BitMEX trading fees, the platform charges a taker fee, which will vary according to the contract you take as well as which crypto or fiat currencies are involved. Makers also get a small rebate from this taker fee. For example, for Bitcoin traditional futures contracts, takers are charged a fee of 0.075%, whereas the maker receives a rebate of 0.025%. There is also a settlement fee of 0.050%. Overall, the BitMEX fees are low when compared with many other trading platforms and are often cited as the exchange’s strongest advantage over competitors.
Launched in 2014 by HDR Global Trading, BitMEX has quickly gained popularity and a reputation as one of the most significant Bitcoin platforms worldwide. In fact, we found that BitMex is supported by almost 200 countries, including the UK, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa and India. The extensive list of countries in which BitMEX can be used makes it a highly suitable choice for traders who travel a lot or may have business interests in other countries.
BitMEX is currently unavailable for US users due to American trading rules. It is also barred in Cuba, North Korea, Sudan and Iran. However, whilst this information was correct at the time of writing, BitMEX is continually looking to expand its global outreach, so it’s always worth seeing if any new jurisdictions have been added in the meantime. Similarly, Bitmix may also change any limits for the countries it already supports.
For this section of our BitMEX exchange review, we will look at exactly what’s involved in trading on the platform and the steps you need to take to get up and running.
The first step is to register for an account. This is fairly straightforward and involves filling out a few details on the platform website. Once this has been completed you will then be sent a link to verify your email address. After this, you need to ensure you opt in to two-factor authentication to make your account as secure as possible. BitMEX does not currently require ID verification upon initial registration, however the operator reserves the right to request it any time. It’s also worth noting that BitMEX could review this policy in future.
Once an account has been set up, it will then be necessary to deposit funds. This is fairly simple thanks to the site’s easy-to-navigate interface. Under the “Account” tab, you will find buttons clearly labelled for depositing and withdrawing. Once you click you’ll be prompted to enter your country of residence. Once your location has been verified, you will see a QR code with your own BitMEX deposit address. Using your Bitcoin wallet software, copy and paste your address and send any amount of Bitcoin. You will then need to scan code or copy your wallet address. You can then use that address to deposit bitcoin into your BitMEX account via your wallet software. BitMEX then makes one confirmation with the Bitcoin network – which takes about ten minutes – then the funds will be added to your account and you will receive an email confirmation. Our BitMEX Exchange review found the whole process from registration to your first deposit can be completed in as little as 15 minutes.
Once the deposit has been successful, then you’re ready to start trading. It’s important to remember that BitMEX is actually a platform for trading contracts. Of course to go into great detail on the finer points of contract trading is beyond the scope of a Bitcoin exchange review, but it’s worth noting that margin trading is not best suited to beginners. Learning to navigate BitMEX and how to trade on the platform is relatively straightforward. Clicking on the “Trade” tab will take you to the transactions screen and display the BitMEX markets. Here you will see all the options for trading on the left hand side of the display, including buy/long, sell/short, contract type and leveraging amounts. It will also list the pair options and latest BitMEX price index.
When it comes time to make a BitMEX withdrawal, simply click on the “Withdraw” tab in the “Account” section and select the desired amount.
Despite it’s security mishap last year, our BitMEX exchange review found that the platform is generally regarded as one of the most secure platforms out there and well trusted by experienced traders.
In terms of its interface, users have lauded the broad range of trading tools BitMEX offers as well as its comprehensive metrics and information. The more complex nature of contracts trading however, does mean that the platform is arguably better suited to the more experienced trader than the casual crypto investor and it’s not uncommon to see the occasional review complaining that the platform is a little confusing for the entry-level user.
Our review found that BitMEX offers a powerful and intuitive trading platform for seasoned traders looking for a top-flight futures and derivatives exchange for cryptocurrency markets and other financial instruments.
Using Bitcoin as its sole denomination has its own pros and cons, but for traders who prioritise low fees, plenty of products and trading formats and anonymity, then this is a major selling point for BitMEX. It is possible that BitMEX will review its offering in this respect in the coming years, but nothing has been confirmed yet.
Traders who are new to the crypto scene, who might be looking to take smaller steps to begin with may find that BitMEX is a little overwhelming and it’s unlikely that investors taking their first steps in cryptocurrency trading will be looking to trade futures and derivatives. As such, our BitMEX exchange review concludes that there are probably more suitable platforms out there than BitMEX.
Overall though, those who are looking for a professional contract-based trading platform will be hard pushed to find better than BitMEX, thanks to its extensive tools and features.
Trading financial products carries a high risk to your capital, especially trading leverage products such as CFDs. CFDs are complex instruments and come with a high risk of losing money rapidly due to leverage. Between 74-89% of retail investor accounts lose money when trading CFDs. You should consider whether you understand how CFDs work and whether you can afford to take the high risk of losing your money.
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