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Coinbase Review - USA (2021)

Summary: Coinbase is the most trusted and regulated exchange in the United States. They are a publicly listed company and uphold the most rigorous regulatory standards. The Coinbase platform offers products for retail investors, institutions and traders.

Tanya Chen

Editor at Buy Bitcoin Finder
Coinbase Review

Coinbase Review

Coinbase is America’s largest cryptocurrency exchange. With its headquarters in San Francisco, Coinbase now has nearly 70 million users from over 100 countries globally. The exchange recently attained a landmark achievement with it going public in the US equities market. It is also known for its high liquidity, an attribute that is critical to smooth functioning of the crypto space.

If you wish to use Coinbase as an exchange or you are comparing it with other crypto exchanges to decide which to use, this review is for you. We will highlight the key features and attributes of the exchange with its strengths and weaknesses. Read on to find out everything about Coinbase that you need to know as a crypto investor or trader.

Coinbase Pros and Cons

Coinbase is one of the top crypto exchanges globally. Like any organization, it has advantages and disadvantages which are as follows.

PROS CONS
Has high liquidity Fees are relatively high
Has a simple, user-friendly interface Website crash during bull runs
Low minimum deposit
Fully regulated crypto exchange
Crypto deposits fully insured

Pros Breakdown

  • High liquidity: This is a critical attribute for an exchange in a highly volatile market like crypto. Coinbase is one of the exchanges recognised for this and that is really something. Because of the high liquidity, users are not likely to experience a lot of slippage when trading cryptocurrencies which is a huge advantage.
  • Simple User interface: The cryptocurrency space sees addition of new users everyday, some of which have no idea how the exchanges works. User interface of crypto exchanges should be easy to use in order to encourage such new users and Coinbase has that. Nearly anyone can safely navigate it and successfully buy or sell crypto.
  • Low minimum deposit: Coinbase requires as little a deposit as $2 to get started. That is pretty low and encouraging for new users to test the waters with small amounts before risking a lot of money.
  • Fully regulated exchange: Coinbase is fully registered and regulated by mainstream regulators. The recent public listing attests to this fact and is a plus for the exchange.
  • Fully insured deposits: One of the risks in the crypto space is the risk of losing funds on exchanges. Customer funds deposited on Coinbase are fully covered by insurance in case of a hack or any other attack that may lead to losses.

Cons Breakdown

  • High fees: Coinbase is notorious for charging high fees as you will see under the breakdown in the fees section. Most exchanges charge way below what this exchange charges customers for using its platform.
  • Website downtimes: Coinbase is simple and exciting to use, but not during periods of high volatility such as a bull run. The website almost always crashes during a bull run and it’s not clear why this issue has not been fixed.


Coinbase Fees

Coinbase charges fees for trading and other activities on its exchange. The fees are not straightforward and depend on various factors such as the trade volume, country where the user is and the deposit/withdrawal method used. The following is the breakdown of fees for U.S residents which may be higher for non-U.S users.

Method Fees
Bank Account 1.49%
Coinbase USD Wallet 1.49%
Debit/Credit Card 3.99%
ACH Transfer Free
Wire Transfer $10 ($25 outgoing)
Crypto Conversion 2.0%


Coinbase also charges spreads on each transaction. This charge varies depending on the trade volume. The maximum charge for a spread is 0.5% for trades under $10,000. This reduces as the volume increases. There are also flat transaction charges depending on the trade volume in USD, EUR or GBP as shown below.

Trade volume Transaction fee (USD, EUR, GBP)
Less than $10 $0.99, €0,99, £0,99
More than $10, Less than $25 $1.49, €1,49, £1,49
More than $25, Less than $50 $1.99, €1,99, £1,99
More than $50, Less than $200 $2.99, €2,99, £2,99

Coinbase Pro Fees

Coinbase Pro, the more advanced version of Coinbase, has a much simpler fee structure and the fees are lower. Therefore to cut the high fees on Coinbase, you can use Coinbase Proif you have enough experience to use its advanced features. The fees are directly related to volume as shown below.

Volume Taker Fee Maker Fee
<$10K 0.50% 0.50%
$10 - 50K 0.35% 0.35%
$50 - 100K 0.25% 0.15%
$100K - 1M 0.20% 0.10%
$1- 10M 0.18% 0.08%
$10 -50M 0.15% 0.05%
$50 - 100M 0.10% 0.00%
$100 - 300M 0.07% 0.00%
$300 - 500M 0.06% 0.00%
$500M - 1B 0.05% 0.00%
$1B+ 0.04% 0.00%

Available Cryptocurrencies

Coinbase is known for listing any cryptocurrency as long as the asset meets its listing conditions. Because of this, it has a long list of cryptocurrencies, currently over 100. This includes top coins such as BTC and ETH as well as tokens and stablecoins. Coinbase has one of the greatest collections of altcoins, making it ideal for altcoin traders. Below is the full list of cryptocurrencies listed on Coinbase.


Is Coinbase Safe?

How secure is Coinbase? This is a question anyone intending to use the exchange would like to ask. Coinbase is one of the only fully regulated crypto exchanges in the USA. It also insures the funds of its customers. Employees are also taken through a thorough screening process during their hiring process to ensure they will not try to steal users funds. Users have lost some funds though due to hacks in the past, so users are encouraged to use strong passwords and 2-Factor Authentication to secure their accounts. 

Conclusion

Coinbase is a reliable platform for buying and trading cryptocurrencies. Despite the high fees, some crypto users prefer it because of the simple user interface and the interesting collection of cryptocurrencies it has. If you don’t mind the fees and the occasional downtimes during periods of high activity then you will find it a good exchange for your crypto trading needs, even if you are a beginner.

Comparisons


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