Did you know that the Kraken cryptocurrency exchange was one of the first? Since 2011, the exchange has catered for active traders, financial institutions, and beginner crypto investors.
In this Kraken review, you will learn all about the exchange, what it offers, the pros, the cons, and whether or not it’s right for you!
In This Guide
The Kraken cryptocurrency exchange was founded in 2011 in San Franciso, United States, and was one of the first cryptocurrency exchanges in the country. Its Bitcoin trading platform first officially launched in 2013 and has now gathered more than 4 million users across 176 countries.
One of the standout features you will find in this Kraken review is the fact the exchange is regulated as a Money Service Business (MBS) by FinCEN in the USA and FINTRAC in Canada. Some of its affiliated businesses are also regulated by the UK FCA, Australia’s AUSTRAC, and Japan’s FSA.
As one of the oldest Bitcoin exchanges, Kraken is now in the top five largest cryptocurrency exchanges in the world, along with Binance and Coinbase (which you can compare in the Kraken v Coinbase review). You can buy, sell, convert or stake 66 different cryptos including all the major coins and altcoins.
As with any financial institution and broker, there are some positives and negatives about what the exchange offers. This is why in this Kraken review it’s important to go through as many of the pros and cons as possible which we go through in detail through. But here’s a quick pros and cons list:
What we like
At the time of writing this Kraken review, you can access live crypto price data, buy and sell on 66 different cryptocurrency pairs including all the major digital assets and stake out your crypto to earn more with what you hold. So whether you are using it as an Ethereum trading platform, want to buy Dogecoin or Bitcoin, the Kraken exchange is a great option!
You can also transact in a variety of different fiat currencies including USD, EUR, CAD, JPY, GBP, CHF and AUD. You can find the full list of the cryptocurrency pairs available on Kraken below:
You can also find a list of supported coins, live prices, the last 24-hour percentage change, along with the market cap information directly on the Kraken exchange website, as shown below:
When it comes to any type of cryptocurrency exchange and broker, knowing the fees is essential – especially if you are using them as a crypto day trading platform. This is why in this Kraken exchange review, we detail them below for full transparency.
You may be pleased to know that Kraken offers some of the best fees in the business. However, there are quite a few fees to know about which include trading fees and payment fees.
If you want to instantly buy, sell or convert Bitcoin or other cryptocurrencies through the online trading platform or Kraken App, the following fees apply:
If you’re a high-volume trader, then the following fees apply to FX pairs and cryptocurrency pairs where a stablecoin is the base currency.
For high-volume traders with higher account balances, the Kraken Pro account offers maker and taker fees that are much lower.
You can also use Kraken as a margin trading platform. The fee schedule can be found below with more available on the Kraken website.
Kraken also provides the ability to trade on cryptocurrency and fiat currency futures which is why in this Kraken crypto exchange review it’s important to list them so you know the full range of products available to you.
There are also varying fees for deposits and withdrawals which are covered in detail in the Payments section further down this Kraken review.
Most cryptocurrency exchanges have buying limits in place to comply with regulation and anti-money laundering practices. We explain them in detail in this Kraken review so you know how you can get started and what the limitations are if any. Let’s take a look.
If depositing via cryptocurrency there are no limits across any of the accounts. However, there is a 24-hour withdrawal limit of $5,000 on the Starter Account and a $500,000 limit on the Intermediate Account, as summarised in the screenshot below.
As Kraken is a cryptocurrency exchange it is not classed as a wallet provider. Users can deposit funds to Kraken’s corporate wallet for safekeeping while funds are exchanged or used for trading.
As they do not provide a personal wallet service, many users would use an external wallet service to hold their cryptos. This could be an online storage service for digital assets or hard storage products so such as a USB drive.
In this Kraken review, it’s important to look at the exchange’s mobile app. After all, cryptocurrencies move very quickly, and having fast access to buy, sell and convert is essential.
Fortunately, this is where Kraken excel! There are three different mobile apps available called the New Kraken App, Kraken Pro, and Kraken Futures. All are available in the Apple AppStore or Google Play store.
The New Kraken App is packed with features which include:
The Kraken Pro and Kraken Futures mobile apps are even more impressive with extra features for professional trading. In fact, the Kraken Pro app has a 4.4 rating out of 18,028 in the Google Play Store.
Opening an account with Kraken is a very simple process and is discussed further down this review in a step-by-step process. Navigating the platform is also very easy. Seeing your balances and position valuation is nice and simple from the homepage, as shown below:
The process of buying, selling, or converting cryptocurrency is also a fairly simple process and can be done several ways by clicking the Trade tab or Buy Crypto tab at the top of the platform or through the Buy icon in your balances section.
One of the simplest ways to buy crypto is through the Trade tab which opens a window like the one below. Here you can choose the cryptocurrency you want to buy and how much. You can trade directly or set orders.
For professional users, the Markets platform may be more suitable. However, this does take some getting used to and may not be the easiest option for beginner traders. It all really depends on why you are reading this Kraken crypto review and whether you are a newbie starting out or a professional looking to elevate your game.
From the Kraken Markets platform, you can view market depth to see how much volume is being transacted at certain price levels, as well as access different charting tools for technical analysis and access advanced order tickets with different options such as market orders, limits and stops.
The mobile trading app is also simple to use, and the exchange lays out a lot of very useful and transparent information in its support section which is very detailed. Overall, Kraken provides a great user experience for all levels.
Kraken provides a good range of different trading tools and features. Not only can you buy, sell and convert cryptocurrency, Kraken also provides the ability for staking. And what good would a Kraken review be if we didn’t cover one of the hottest topics in the crypto space right now!
As you can see from the above screenshot in this Kraken crypto review, you can stake out your coins and earn rewards twice a week from them. The annualised percentages are shown for the different cryptos you can stake out. While these values change over time, it can be a great way to supercharge your overall returns from your crypto holdings.
As cryptocurrency exchanges are still relatively new and some are unregulated (unlike Kraken), deposit and withdrawal methods can vary wildly. This is why in this Kraken review we go through them in as much detail as possible as highlighted below.
There are two different ways to deposit funds with Kraken. One is through bank wire transfer and the other method is via depositing cryptocurrency.
If you are depositing via a widely used cryptocurrency then there are no funding fees charged by Kraken.
If you are depositing funds via fiat currency then there are fees to do so which vary depending on the currency you are using, as highlighted for the US dollar below.
First-time cash deposits will have a temporary 72-hour withdrawal hold on them.
(MVB Bank, Signature Bank)
Individual / EEA & US Business Pro
The Kraken support page details all the fees for USD, EUR, CAD, AUD, GBP, CHF, and JPY deposits. For example:
For those eligible to do so, every crypto purchase made with your card has a fee of 3.75% + €0.25. The minimum transaction amount is €10 and there is a maximum spending amount of €7,500 within a 7-day rolling period.
The withdrawal fees charged by Kraken vary depending on whether you are withdrawing cryptocurrency or fiat currency. In this Kraken review, you can find a selection of some of the withdrawal fees and minimum amounts.
Below is a small selection of the cryptocurrency withdrawal fees.
Below is a small selection of the cash withdrawal fees which can only be done via online bank transfer.
The minimum deposit varies depending on the method used to deposit funds. For example, those eligible to use debit or credit cards in euros have a minimum deposit amount of €10.
As shown in the list above, there are various minimum deposits for funding accounts in US dollars depending on which method and bank you use. This varies from $1 to $150.
There is also a minimum order size for fiat currencies, as highlighted below:
One of the most important elements of a Kraken review is to know whether or not they are regulated. Especially now, as there are many crypto exchanges that are unregulated.
Fortunately, Kraken is one of the world’s most regulated crypto exchanges. They are registered as a Money Service Business (MSB) with FinCEN in the USA — registration number 31000176593851 and FINTRAC in Canada — registration number M19343731.
Its UK entity, under the name of CryptoFacilities Ltd, is regulated by the UK Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) – reference number 757895.
The Australian entity, under the name of Bit Trade Pty Limited, is registered as a Digital Currency Exchange and is regulated by AUSTRAC.
One great feature of Kraken is the fact they have a live chat feature which means you can speak to a live agent – after you’ve gone through the bot first. An important feature of any Kraken review is to make sure you know you have access to support!
What’s even better is the fact the live chat operates 24/7!
If this Kraken exchange review has helped and you’re ready to get going and open an account to start buying cryptocurrency, then keep on reading this Kraken review and follow this step-by-step process.
Opening an account with Kraken is a breeze. Simply click the Create Account tab and fill in your email, username, and password.
You’ll then be sent an activation code to verify your email address and open your account. Once this is done you have immediate access to the Kraken platform.
All regulated entities will need to verify your details as part of regulatory requirements. There are three layers of verification with Kraken with each layer asking for more verification while unlocking more features.
The Starter verification only takes 1 – 2 minutes and requires basic personal information but no bank transfers can be made. The Intermediate verification takes 4 – 5 minutes and you can start using bank transfers but you will need to provide standard ID documents.
To start buying, selling, converting, or staking your crypto you need to deposit funds into your account. This could be a fiat currency or cryptos depending on what you want and your level of verification.
Depositing cryptocurrency that is widely known is fee-free as discussed earlier in this Kraken review. There are a variety of charges depending on which currency you are using and the method.
Once you have funds in your account you can do a variety of different things such as buy more cryptocurrency, sell what you have, convert it into another cryptocurrency, or stake it for interest payments.
If you want to buy cryptocurrency as quickly as possible then click on the Trade icon at the top. This will open a trading ticket for you to input what cryptocurrency you want to buy, the amount, and what it will cost, as shown below:
You can also click on the Prices tab to view all of the different cryptocurrencies available, as well as the last 24-hour price change in percentage and the total market cap. From here, you can simply click buy or sell, as shown below!
In this Kraken exchange review, we have highlighted some of the features and benefits which show it is a good player in the crypto field. But, as cryptos become more mainstream there are some competitors who are elevating their offering to crypto investors.
One cryptocurrency trading platform that is now hugely popular is eToro. If you are interested in trading cryptocurrencies with a regulated broker, competitive fees, and a ton of advanced features then you should also consider an eToro review.
First of all, eToro is regulated by the UK FCA, CySEC, and ASIC providing a high level of safety and security of your funds. Second of all, you can buy, sell or convert a huge range of cryptocurrencies including all the major coins and altcoins. Thirdly, you can use eToro as a CFD trading platform and also trade other asset classes like stocks, indices and commodities on margin.
What about the fees? Let’s have a look at a comparison.
1.5% fee for any other crypto or FX pair.
Payment card deposit = 3.75% + €0.25
Withdrawal (USD) = $4 – $35
Withdrawal (EUR) = €0.09 to €35
Rollover fee = 0.01% to 0.02% every 4 hours
Withdrawals = $5 fee for withdrawals
As you can see, the eToro fees are highly competitive and massively beat Kraken in a number of areas.
However, eToro really stands out because it is simply the best copy trading platform in the world. This is where you can view the performance of other cryptocurrency traders, copy their exact trades onto your own account or just watch their crypto signals. Or you could build your own track record and get paid when other people copy your crypto trades! It’s almost like having your own Bitcoin robot!
The eToro social trading platform and the mobile trading app are really simple to use and feature-rich. You can buy, sell or copy other traders at the click of a button.
If you join the eToro Club you also get access to:
67% of retail investor accounts lose money when trading CFDs with this provider. Your capital is at risk.
To conclude this Kraken review, we can surmise that the exchange provides a great option to enter the cryptocurrency market. It’s regulated and offers a wide variety of features.
However, if you’re looking to save as much capital as possible then eToro is another regulated cryptocurrency broker which offers a ton of features and much better fees for dealing, depositing, and withdrawing funds.
With eToro, there is also the option to copy other successful crypto traders, or make extra revenue from staking your coins or from other people copying your trades!
Two great options nonetheless but with eToro coming out ahead.
In the Kraken platform, click Funding. Scroll down to find your Bitcoin deposit address. Copy this address. Go to your Coinbase account and click on the Send/Receive icon. Paste the Kraken BTC address in the To box in the Send window.
This depends on the level of verification. Started accounts are verified in 1 - 2 minutes, Intermediate accounts in 4 - 5 minutes and Pro accounts a few days.
Kraken is based all over the world with headquarters at Payward Ventures Inc., 237 Kearny Street #102, San Francisco, CA 94108. Other offices are in London, Japan, and Singapore.
Login to the Kraken platform. Click Buy Crypto from the top menu. Select how much Bitcoin you want to buy. Confirm the trade.
This is a good question as many cryptocurrency exchanges are unregulated. But, as highlighted in this Kraken crypto review, the exchange offers a high level of safety because they are regulated to provide services where they operate including the United States, the UK/Europe, and Asia.
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