5 Best Bitcoin Brokers in 2021

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Affiliate Disclosure DailyForex.com adheres to strict guidelines to preserve editorial integrity to help you make decisions with confidence. Some of the reviews and content we feature on this site are supported by affiliate partnerships from which this website may receive money. This may impact how, where and which companies / services we review and write about. Our team of experts work to continually re-evaluate the reviews and information we provide on all the top Forex / CFD brokerages featured here. Our research focuses heavily on the broker’s custody of client deposits and the breadth of its client offering. Safety is evaluated by quality and length of the broker's track record, plus the scope of regulatory standing. Major factors in determining the quality of a broker’s offer include the cost of trading, the range of instruments available to trade, and general ease of use regarding execution and market information.

Every successful investor and trader should consider adding Bitcoin and other digital assets to a well-rounded and diversified portfolio. Read on to discover DailyForex’s picks for the best Bitcoin brokers (based on reviewing over 100 Bitcoin brokers on eleven criteria) so that you can choose the right one for you.

1
eToro
The ratings shown on DailyForex.com are determined by hours of research from our editorial team into over 10 factors, including account fees, deposit/withdrawal options, regulatory status, tradable assets, and more.
Best social trading platform on the market
Excellent choice of options for crypto traders
2
Markets.com
The ratings shown on DailyForex.com are determined by hours of research from our editorial team into over 10 factors, including account fees, deposit/withdrawal options, regulatory status, tradable assets, and more.
Marketsi strategy builder helps traders trade smarter
Competitive trade execution with low slippage
CFD service 72% lose money
3
Plus500
The ratings shown on DailyForex.com are determined by hours of research from our editorial team into over 10 factors, including account fees, deposit/withdrawal options, regulatory status, tradable assets, and more.
Best platform for new Forex traders
Trailing stop losses
Get Started
CFD service 72% lose money
4
AvaTrade
The ratings shown on DailyForex.com are determined by hours of research from our editorial team into over 10 factors, including account fees, deposit/withdrawal options, regulatory status, tradable assets, and more.
High level regulation in multiple jurisdictions
Impressive range of tradeable assets including vanilla options and gold options
5
Pepperstone
The ratings shown on DailyForex.com are determined by hours of research from our editorial team into over 10 factors, including account fees, deposit/withdrawal options, regulatory status, tradable assets, and more.
Best ECN execution on the MT4 platform
Excellent implementation of cTrader and Smart Trader Tools

Top Bitcoin Brokers at a Glance

eToro Best broker for social traders and crypto traders : 75% of retail CFD accounts lose money.
Markets.com Excellent educational offerings.
Plus500 Wide range of CFDs + trailing stop losses.
AvaTrade Highly regulated, choice of fixed or floating spreads.
Pepperstone Great ECN execution on MT4 platform.

eToro
5.0/5 in this category
In Summary
Best broker for social traders and crypto traders : 75% of retail CFD accounts lose money

eToro was founded in the early days of the online retail Forex era, in 2007 – this broker occupies a unique space as the king of social and copy trading. eToro has a long track record and unique reputation to protect, although this image is more focused on its copy trading model than on any other individual feature, except maybe its special relationship with cryptocurrencies. 

Unique Features

Regulation

CySEC, FCA, ASIC

Minimum Deposit

$200

Type of Platform

Proprietary platform

eToro is regulated in Cyprus, the U.K., Australia, and the United States although its U.S. offering is firmly differentiated from its offering to the rest of the world.  

eToro guarantees several benefits to anyone opening an Islamic account: no rollover interest or commissions on any trade contracts lasting for longer than 24 hours will be charged, and no commissions or fees are charged to Islamic accounts for account management. Notably, interest-free leverage is also offered to Islamic account holders. 

eToro is a leading cryptocurrencies CFD broker. Following its 2019 acquisition of Danish blockchain company Firmo and Belgian crypto portfolio tracker application Delta, it released its cryptocurrency wallet for mobile devices. The proprietary sentiment indicator for digital assets based on Twitter activity presents a social trading tool millennials favor.

eToro Pros & Cons

Advantages

  • Excellent equity asset selection and broad cryptocurrency choices

  • Cryptocurrency wallet for Android and iOS

  • Twitter-based digital asset sentiment indicator

  • Simple social trading procedure

Disadvantages

  • Below average educational resources

  • Internal withdrawal fees plus higher core trading costs

  • MT4 trading platform not supported

  • Low leverage and higher minimum deposit

Markets.com
5.0/5 in this category
In Summary
Excellent educational offerings

Markets.com, part of UK-publicly listed and FTSE 250 constituent Playtech PLC, offers traders one of the most trusted, secure, and competitive brokers. It operates four subsidiaries regulated in the UK, Cyprus, Australia, and the British Virgin Islands, with the latter two presenting the best trading conditions. Markets.com serves traders via Marketsx and investors through Marketsi. Besides its proprietary trading platform, Markets.com deploys the MT4 and MT5 trading platforms. Traders also have access to fourteen quality trading tools, consisting of sentiment, technical, and fundamental indicators. They provide clients of Markets.com with a notable competitive advantage.

Unique Features

Regulation

CySEC, FCA, ASIC, FSCA

Minimum Deposit

$100

Another benefit at Markets.com remains its asset selection. Forex traders have a choice of 67 currency pairs and 25 cryptocurrency pairs. Equity traders get access to 2,027 equity CFDs, 60 ETFs, and 40 index CFDs. Completing the selection are 28 commodities, 23 in-house created blends (in-house thematic portfolios), and four bonds. Markets.com also provides Forex traders with one of the best commission-free cost structures starting from 0.6 pips on the EUR/USD currency pair. It translates into $6.00 per lot or $12 per round lot. Equity traders pay a fixed commission of $10 or a currency equivalent per side for a total cost of $20 per trade. Other noteworthy advantages include the personalized financial live-stream service XRay, its Investment Strategy Builder, its outstanding order execution statistics, and its transparency.

 

Markets Pros & Cons

Advantages

  • Very Competitive Forex Fees

  • Very Wide Choice of Assets

  • Choice of Trading Platforms

  • Excellent Customer Support

Disadvantages

  • Commodities and Indices Fees Higher than Forex Fees

Plus500
5.0/5 in this category
In Summary
Wide range of CFDs + trailing stop losses

Plus 500 offers a wide choice of Forex pairs and non-Forex assets as commission-free CFDs. While this broker neither supports automated trading solutions nor social trading, manual traders have a clean user-interface, guaranteed stop-loss orders at an additional cost, alerts on price movements, and a trader sentiment indicator. This FTSE 250 listed broker maintains a safe and secure trading environment and offers a wide range of equity CFDs and an extensive selection of options contracts, allowing more sophisticated trading strategies. Plus 500 takes an opportunistic approach to Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies, offering a choice of 14 crypto pairs for traders.

Unique Features

Regulation

CySEC, FCA, ASIC, FMA, FSB, MAS

Minimum Deposit

$100

Type of Platform

Proprietary platform, Web-based

Traders using smartphones or tablets will feel at home at Plus 500, where a report suggests mobile devices account for over 40% of all executed trades. Plus 500 does not offer in-house research and does not source it from third-parties, while the limited educational content is below average. It does maintain a News and Market Insights section, where it uploads commentary several times per week, but not necessarily daily. Despite its few shortfalls, it remains a highly ranked CFD provider on Google Play and Apple App Store, particularly with millennial traders.

 

Plus500 Pros & Cons

Advantages

  • Well-regulated globally

  • Broad asset selection in equities and options

  • Guaranteed stop-loss order

Disadvantages

  • Low leverage for retail traders

  • Sub-standard trading platform without support for automated or social trading

  • No research and limited, below-average educational content

  • Lack of trading tools

AvaTrade
5.0/5 in this category
In Summary
Highly regulated, choice of fixed or floating spreads

AvaTrade was founded in 2006 in Dublin, Ireland. They are one of the largest and most famous Forex / CFD brokers in the world and became well-known for offering their clients a choice of fixed or floating spread cost of trading models. They enjoy an extremely high and strong level of regulation, making them a favorite for traders who are extremely nervous about the security of their deposit, which in Ireland can be protected by a strong investor deposit protection provision. AvaTrade is directly regulated in Ireland (and by extension, the European Union), Australia, Japan, South Africa, and the British Virgin Islands. Outside the European Union, Ava’s maximum leverage offered runs as high as 400 to 1.

Unique Features

Minimum Deposit

$100

Type of Platform

MetaTrader 4, MetaTrader 5, Proprietary platform, Web-based

In addition to their longevity and safe reputation, clients know that through AvaTrade they have access to a broad range of asset classes through which diversification can be achieved successfully: AvaTrade offers trading in over 55 different Forex currency pairs, 17 commodities, 20 equity indices, 14 cryptocurrencies, plus 66 individual stocks and shares. Even better, and unusually, 2 bonds and 6 ETFs are also on the menu. The diversity offered here stands out.

Whether you are located within the European Union or not, all branches of AvaTrade will offer you negative balance protection, above and beyond what is mandated by the law. This means that under no circumstances will any client of AvaTrade ever be held liable by the firm for an amount larger than their deposit.

 

AvaTrade Pros & Cons

Advantages

  • Well-regulated globally, with the Bank of Ireland, the primary regulator

  • Low minimum deposit and in-depth educational tools

  • Wide asset choice across seven sectors

  • Superior mobile trading platform

Disadvantages

  • Low leverage for retail traders

  • High quarterly inactivity fee

  • Unacceptable cost for AvaProtect

Pepperstone
4.5/5 in this category
In Summary
Great ECN execution on MT4 platform


Pepperstone, founded in 2010 and headquartered and regulated in Australia, the U.K., and Dubai, is possibly the most well-known ECN Forex broker in the world. ASIC’s deft regulatory touch combined with local expertise made Australia a haven for broker startups heavy on technology and offering extra-speedy frictionless execution and extremely high maximum leverage. Pepperstone offer geographically eligible clients a maximum leverage as high as 500 to 1, which is enough for anybody’s trading needs.

Unique Features

Regulation

CySEC, FCA, BaFin, ASIC, CMA, DFSA

Minimum Deposit

$200

Type of Platform

MetaTrader 4, MetaTrader 5, cTrader

As an ECN broker, Pepperstone offer raw spreads and low commissions. Taken together, Pepperstone’s “Razor” account gives one of the lowest and most competitive cost of trading in Forex that you will find anywhere.

In addition to their global headquarters in Australia, Pepperstone also have presences in London, England, where they enjoy full regulation by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), and in Dubai, where they are regulated by the Dubai Financial Services Authority (DFSA).

Pepperstone is renowned for its advanced technology tools such as Smart Trader Tools and cTrader Automate. cTrader is one of the more popular trading platforms out there but is not offered by a majority of brokers, so Pepperstone can be a good choice if you want to trade with an ECN brokerage through the cTrader trading platform.

Pepperstone Pros & Cons

Advantages

  • Low minimum deposit and high leverage

  • Choice of trading platforms and social trading alternatives

  • Comprehensive MT4/MT5 upgrade package and VPS hosting

  • Active trader program and competitive cost structure

Disadvantages

  • Limited asset selection

Top 5 Bitcoin Brokers Overview

Scroll horizontally to see the whole table.
 

Etoro
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Markets.com
Visit Site

AvaTrade
Visit Site

Coinbase
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Pepperstone
Visit Site

Our Rating

9.9

9.6

9.5

9.3

9.2

Retail Loss Rate

75.0%

75.6%

79.0%

Unspecified

79.3%

Regulation

Yes

Yes

Yes

No

Yes

Minimum Raw Spreads

Not Applicable

Not Applicable

Not Applicable

Not Applicable

0.0 pips

Minimum Standard Spreads

1.0 pips

0.6 pips

0.9 pips

Unspecified

1.0 pips

Minimum Commission for Forex

Not Applicable

Not Applicable

Not Applicable

Not Applicable

$7.00 per lot

Commission for CFDs/DMA

0.09%

Commission-Free

Commission-Free

$0.99 - $2.99 0.50% max

$0.02/share

Commission Rebates

No

Not Applicable

Not Applicable

No

Yes

Minimum Deposit

$200

$250

$100

$0

$200

Demo Account

Yes

Yes

Yes

No

Yes

Managed Account

Yes

No

No

No

Yes

Islamic Account

Yes

No

Yes

No

No

Inactivity Fee

$10 per month

$10 per month

$50 per month

No

No

Deposit Fee

No

No

No

No

No

Withdrawal Fee

Yes + Third-Party

Third-Party

Third-Party

Yes + Third-Party

Third-Party

Funding Methods

10

8

5

3

9

Asset List and Leverage Overview

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Etoro
Visit Site

Markets.com
Visit Site

AvaTrade
Visit Site

Coinbase
Visit Site

Pepperstone
Visit Site

Currency Pairs

49

120

55

0

61

Cryptocurrency Pairs

93

7

14

4477

5

Commodities and Metals

31

35

24

0

15

Index CFDs

13

58

26

0

14

Equity CFDs

2039

3313

982

0

64

Bonds

0

4

0

0

0

ETFs

151

77

31

0

0

Commission Rebates

No

Not Applicable

Not Applicable

No

Yes

Options

0

0

42

0

0

Maximum Retail Leverage

1:30

1:30

1:30

1:3

1:500

Maximum Pro Leverage

1:400

1:300

1:400

1:3

1:500

Overview of Trading Platforms

 

Etoro
Visit Site

Markets.com
Visit Site

AvaTrade
Visit Site

Coinbase
Visit Site

Pepperstone
Visit Site

MT4

No

Yes

Yes

No

Yes

MT5

No

Yes

Yes

No

Yes

cTrader

No

No

No

No

Yes

Proprietary Platform

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

No

Automated Trading

No

Yes

Yes

No

Yes

Social Trading

Yes

No

Yes

No

Yes

MT4/MT5 Add-Ons

No

No

No

No

Yes

Guaranteed Stop Loss

No

No

No

No

No

Negative Balance Protection

Yes

Yes

Yes

No

Yes

Unique Feature One

Broad Equity CFD Selection

Broad Asset Selection

Regulated by CB of Ireland

Education that pays

VPS

Unique Feature Two

Not Applicable

Excellent Trading Tools

Broad Asset Selection

Broad Crypto Selection

Loyalty Program

Bitcoin Industry Overview

Bitcoin officially launched in 2009 but was a pure retail phenomenon for many years until 2016 when its price began to increase exponentially. It formed a massive bubble which burst in December 2017 after just failing to hit $20,000. This dramatic increase created many new retail millionaires before the Crypto Winter of 2018 sent it spiraling down to below $3,100. It was a necessary development, allowed Bitcoin to mature, and attract institutional capital. Regulators around the globe warmed up to this new asset class. The Covid-19 pandemic of 2020 led to panic selling by retail traders while professionals dumped Bitcoin to meet margin calls for equity portfolios. This led Bitcoin down to a reaction low below $4,000 from where it launched a strong recovery. By the end of 2020 Bitcoin was again close to its all-time high price. Bitcoin remains volatile but also possesses tremendous profit potential. More companies have added Bitcoin to their balance sheets, banks have started to embrace it, and it has solidified itself as a viable store of value, often labeled digital gold.

While the mining of the first block of Bitcoin, on January 3rd, 2009, also referred to as the genesis block of Bitcoin or Block 0, started a revolution, the idea of digital assets dates back over a decade. Many companies floated ideas and implemented or used digital assets before the yet-to-be-identity behind Satoshi Nakamoto mined the now-infamous Block 0 of Bitcoin, which created a new asset class. Computer engineer Wei Dai and computer scientist Nick Szabo, the creators of Bitcoin predecessors b-money and bit gold, respectively, were early supporters of Bitcoin. Satoshi Nakamoto, per rumors but without official proof, mined 1,000,000 Bitcoin before disappearing from the public, handing over the project to Gavin Andresen, the lead developer at the Bitcoin Foundation.

Fast forward a decade, and an entire ecosystem exists around cryptocurrencies and digital assets, of which there are more than 7,000, and the number continues to grow. Following the 2008 global financial crisis, trust in the fractional reserve banking system diminished, debt continues to pose a significant threat, and many, especially those below the age of 40, sought an alternative to fiat currency. The demand for cryptocurrencies results in many exchanges vying for the title of the best Bitcoin exchange. It leads to improvements in their trading platforms and services to attract traders. Bitcoin remains the most valuable cryptocurrency, and most online Forex brokers start to offer trading in this evolving asset class, either via direct market access or through derivatives, most commonly contract for differences (CFDs). Investors and traders need to understand the difference between buying and selling the actual currency or doing so with a derivatives contract.

At first, most Bitcoin transactions took place on cryptocurrency exchanges, but Forex brokers expanded into the sector. Today, most offer Bitcoin CFDs, and some support various wallets to allow transactions of actual cryptocurrencies. Our review examined over 100 brokers to determine the best Bitcoin brokers for November 2020. The sector remains in its infancy but has matured to a level where trading has become more stable, price action respects technical parameters, and a growing number of professionals have entered the market. Companies, especially software companies, and banks started to embrace Bitcoin and company as an asset, and investors and traders have one more sector to analyze, trade, and generate profits. Bitcoin trading will continue to attract new traders and expand its market share among traded assets. With this list of our best Bitcoin brokers, you will have the infrastructure to add Bitcoin trading to your daily routine successfully.

Bitcoin Trading Regulation

As with all assets, regulation varies by jurisdiction, and in the case of Bitcoin and other digital assets, it may differ between regions within the same country if there is some kind of federalized political system. Since all our reviewed brokers provide exposure to the cryptocurrency market via CFDs, traders do not possess ownership of the underlying asset. Therefore, cryptocurrency regulation, spotty and changing as it may be, does not apply. All that matters is that the broker remains well-regulated and compliant with all rules, and CFD traders have nothing to worry over. It is important to note that those seeking to buy and hold, or hodl as the cryptocurrency sector refers to it, must do so by purchasing Bitcoin on an exchange, which requires a cryptocurrency wallet. CFDs are for trading purposes with a short-term approach only, due to daily financing costs on leveraged overnight positions. So, if you want to hodl, you must own the asset in your cryptocurrency wallet, but if you seek to trade and profit from the volatility in price action, you will do so with ease by using CFDs. Ensure you do so with a regulated broker, which was a criterion for all the Bitcoin brokers we reviewed.

What to Look for in a Bitcoin Broker?

While managing your assets from a competitive Bitcoin trading platform remains essential, there are several other factors to consider when evaluating a broker to ensure you deposit your capital into a safe, secure, and transparent environment.

Here are some attributes each Bitcoin broker must excel at:

  • Regulation: Always make sure that you trade with a regulated broker. It does not provide a 100% guarantee that you will not experience well-hidden malpractice, but it does go a long way to ensure you remain protected against outright fraud and theft. Traders must avoid trading with an unregulated broker, irrelevant of how attractive an offer may be.
  • Reputation: Regulation is not all that traders should rely on, as reputation is equally important. A Bitcoin broker that enjoys the trust of a growing number of traders and has been operational for over a decade points to a secure trading environment.
  • Price: While the price of Bitcoin may appear the same across all exchanges, you must look at the difference between the bid and the ask price, known as the spread. It is how brokers earn their revenues, and there can be vast differences in the mark-up, which will directly impact your profitability. Select a broker with tight spreads so you can earn more from each trade. Market makers with commission-free trading usually cover the difference with a notably higher mark-up.
  • Payment Charges: Most brokers waive deposit fees, but some apply internal withdrawal charges. Also, check the costs of your payment processor, as most payment options carry costs. Depending on your preference and circumstances, you may want to make sure your broker supports your payment processor. You may also face currency conversion charges if you transact in a currency that differs from your account base currency.
  • Customer Support: You never know when something unexpected occurs, and trading with a Bitcoin broker that offers swift access to customer support can assist. Since cryptocurrency trading takes place 24/7, look for a broker with 24/7 customer support. Otherwise, it will be less beneficial than you may need it to be.
  • Design & Ease of Use: The best Bitcoin trading platforms will feature a user-friendly interface, allowing traders to manage their portfolios with ease. The MT4 and MT5 trading platforms require upgrades, available at a cost, to achieve improved usability for trading Bitcoin. Some brokers offer them free of charge, while others have developed a proprietary trading platform. Do not be afraid to test them all as demo accounts to see the differences and find the one that suits you the most.
  • Variety of Coins: All brokers offering cryptocurrency CFDs will provide access to the top four assets by market value. It is adequate for new retail traders to get started, but if you require broader access, the choice of brokers will narrow significantly.
  • Leverage: Trading CFDs without leverage defeats the purpose of a derivative contract, but always use leverage together with good risk management. It remains the most beneficial trading tool and also the most misunderstood and misused one. Since cryptocurrencies remain highly volatile, the maximum is often much lower than on other assets. Trading with a Bitcoin broker granting maximum leverage of at least 1:5 will offer enough of a competitive edge.
  • Demo Account: A demo account is usually available at all brokers. Use it to test the trading platform, or if you have an automated trading solution, run it in a demo version first. Many brokers create more favorable conditions in a demo account to attract deposits from new traders. Many believe a demo account is ideal for learning how to trade, more effectively conducted in a live trading environment with a small initial deposit.
  • Initial Deposit: The smaller the initial deposit, the greater the flexibility of your financial management. Most brokers lowered their minimum to $100, some have it as low as $1, and others waive it altogether. Also, check about follow-on deposits, as most brokers require a more significant initial one and lower it after that.

Pros & Cons of Trading Bitcoin with a Broker

There are pros and cons of trading Bitcoin with a broker rather than at an official exchange. It often depends on your preferences.

The Pros of Trading Bitcoin with a Broker

  • CFDs do not require a cryptocurrency wallet
  • Regulatory restrictions do not apply
  • More leverage on assets
  • Broader range of payment options
  • 24/7 customer service
  • Trading tools, research, and education
  • Ease of use from customizable trading platforms

The Cons of Trading Bitcoin with a Broker

  • Higher costs due to mark-up in spreads
  • Not suited for long-term investors and hodlers
  • Fewer assets

How do Bitcoin Brokerages Work?

Most Bitcoin brokerages write derivative contracts, usually CFDs, that allows traders to profit from price action without owning the underlying asset. CFDs remain the best assets for traders, developed for short-term trading with leverage. Since traders do not own the instruments, there is no need to sign-up for a cryptocurrency wallet. Brokers earn their revenues via spreads, commissions, or a combination of both. Some offer direct investments into the asset and provide clients with a cryptocurrency wallet.

The Difference Between a Bitcoin Broker and an Exchange

There are three notable differences between a Bitcoin broker and an exchange:

  • Brokers offer derivatives without ownership, while Bitcoin exchanges grant it. Therefore, the former caters to traders and the latter to investors.
  • Spreads at Bitcoin brokers are usually higher.
  • Brokers have fewer assets, often focusing on the top fifteen or less of the ones with the largest market capitalization. The best Bitcoin exchange will provide investors and traders with a broad selection of cryptocurrencies and other digital assets, allow for swift conversion between them, and grant superior liquidity, leading to improved trading costs.

Bitcoin Buying Fees

Before you can determine the best Bitcoin trading platform, make sure you evaluate the associated fees. They vary across brokers and consist of spreads, commissions, or a combination of both if you trade derivatives. Purchasing physical Bitcoin faces network costs and commissions, and depending on the payment processor, you may have to pay a percentage of the deposit amount.

Selling Short Bitcoin

One of the benefits of trading Bitcoin CFDs is that you can profit from price action in either direction. Short selling Bitcoin allows traders to earn from a decline in the price of Bitcoin, while they lose if the asset advances. The best Bitcoin brokers have no restrictions on trading strategies, granting complete freedom on how traders approach Bitcoin.

Bitcoin CFD to Hodl

Since a Bitcoin CFD does not offer ownership of the physical asset, and daily swap rates on leveraged overnight positions apply, it is not suited to hodl Bitcoin. Anyone interested in hodling should do so in a cryptocurrency wallet that can store Bitcoin after its purchase. Hodling derived from a typo on social media from the word holding, which caught on with the cryptocurrency crowd and is now part of the terminology.

Blockchain & Bitcoin

Many new retail traders often confuse the two or mistake them for the same product. The blockchain technology is not specific to Bitcoin, but rather a requirement for all digital assets to function. Bitcoin requires it, but there are many blockchain solutions, which do not require cryptocurrency assets, spanning other sectors. In plain English, a blockchain compares to a hyper-charged database. It can be centralized or decentralized, and various blockchains use different protocols. Bitcoin is a cryptocurrency that functions on the blockchain, where transactions are confirmed, ledgers maintained, and new Bitcoins mined.

Cryptocurrency Wallets

The primary purpose of a cryptocurrency wallet is to store digital assets. It remains a requirement for anyone interested in owning the physical asset or to hodl Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. Bitcoin trading via CFDs does not require one since there is no ownership. There are many available, with two distinct ones to consider. A hot wallet is stored online, which remains vulnerable to hacking and theft. A cold wallet keeps Bitcoin offline, making it more secure. The former ideal if you need to make online transactions, so maintaining a small amount in a hot wallet is acceptable. The latter is the better alternative for hodlers. Several companies developed cold wallets, and you should keep most of your physical, digital assets in secure offline storage. Paper wallets fail to gain popularity and compare to gift cards. A generator will create a unique Bitcoin address that you can print and keep in a safe place. They are less convenient than a cold wallet but do not require hardware.

Cryptocurrency Exchanges

With the emergence of the cryptocurrency sector, new exchanges appeared. They allow investors to purchase physical assets delivered to their cryptocurrency wallets. All maintain hot wallets but store most digital assets in cold storage to protect them from theft. Many remain unregulated, some dominant ones went out of business after being hacked, and others appear across the world. Over the past decade, some more trustworthy and stable cryptocurrency exchanges started to form the nucleus of today's infrastructure for all digital assets. Over the next decade, more cryptocurrency exchanges may appear to cater to the growing demand, both from the retail and professional sectors.

Investors can often get improved pricing on exchanges, where broker mark-ups do not factor in. They charge a commission per transaction, and network fees apply. While some do try to comply with AML/KYC requirements, others maintain a pure cryptocurrency approach where privacy and anonymity remain superior to government and regulatory mandated rules and regulations. Others offer a hybrid approach, where investors can transact without account verification up to a specific limit. Trading with exchanges that operate in jurisdictions without proper oversight carries additional risks, and investors must weigh them carefully. The entire sector continues to evolve and mature, and more changes moving forward will reshape the current business model, bringing more in-line with well-established equity exchanges.

ICO & Token

An initial coin offering (ICO) refers to the public sale of a coin on an exchange. It allows investors to take part in a new project based on expectations that it will yield disruptive results. Some compare it to an initial public offering (IPO) of a private company that lists its shares in a public market to raise capital. Most legal experts, correctly, disagree with that comparison. While some similarities may exist, an ICO resembles crowdfunding for a project using blockchain technology. After Bitcoin kick-started the cryptocurrency sector, over 7,000 assets followed suit, creating an entire ecosystem around it. Early enthusiasts account for a significant part of the initial financing, but institutional capital plays a growing role in it. Investors in an ICO treat the asset as a store of value and generally do not intent to sell for a quick profit.

A token is the opposite and intended for transactions. It is programmable for a specific purpose and can be multi-functional if needed. They usually remain stored on a different blockchain, with Ethereum the dominant one. Many dominant projects use the ERC-20 token on the Ethereum blockchain, and some migrate to their blockchain following an ICO. There are many token sales as new projects come online and crowd-sale their vision directly to potential future users. Therefore, the cryptocurrency and digital asset sectors are well-positioned to expand to all sectors of life.

Cryptocurrency Risks

While the cryptocurrency sector is exciting and offers excellent opportunities for investors and traders alike, they do not come without risks. Regrettably, the industry especially in relation to little-known coins is quite rife with scams and fraud, as criminals seek to profit from the increasing popularity, especially among new retail traders who often follow the social media hype without conducting due diligence. The risk of hacking of cryptocurrency exchanges and loss of assets persists, and while frequency decreased, the threat endures. Safe storage and security of private keys remain additional risks and challenges. This is one reason many Forex and CFD brokers do not offer physical transactions of assets while relying on derivative contracts. High volatility also adds a significant trading risk.

Methodology (How We Test/Choose)

We reviewed over 100 Bitcoin brokers based on eleven criteria. Each research consists of over 2,000 words and lasted more than ten hours. Over 100 brokers were reviewed in-depth and from a trader's perspective, ignoring the marketing tactics deployed by some to confuse retail traders. Therefore, we sourced the list of our Best Bitcoin Brokers from more than 200,000 words of dedicated research compiled over 1,000 hours, ensuring the most comprehensive approach to identify the Best Bitcoin Brokers.

The eleven criteria used in our research are:

  • Regulation and Security
  • Trading Costs
  • Asset Selection
  • Account Types
  • Trading Platforms
  • Unique Features
  • Research and Education
  • Customer Support
  • Bonuses and Promotions
  • Account Opening Process
  • Deposits & Withdrawals

FAQs

What is the safest Bitcoin exchange?

It depends on your geographic location and trading preferences. There is no single Bitcoin exchange or broker that is necessarily “safest” for all.

Can you buy Bitcoin in a brokerage account?

Yes, a growing number of brokers offer Bitcoin, but usually as a derivative contract. Some also support Bitcoin auto trading as an option.

What is a Bitcoin broker?

A Bitcoin broker allows investors and traders to transact in Bitcoin and underlying derivative contracts. There are Bitcoin brokers who developed a dedicated Bitcoin trading app to support trading it.

Do I need a broker to buy Bitcoin?

No, you can do so on an exchange or peer-to-peer off-exchange.

Who is the best Bitcoin broker?

The best Forex broker to trade Bitcoin depends, once again, on your needs and preferences. All five that made our Best Bitcoin Brokers list are competitive choices worth considering.

How much is the Bitcoin fee?

The fees vary across brokers and exchanges but can include spreads, commission, and a network fee if you purchase the physical asset. Deposit and currency conversion costs may also apply.

How are Bitcoin fees calculated?

It is a complicated practice of trial and error, but cryptocurrency wallets do the math for you. Miners need to verify each transaction, and they seek the highest reward. Each block has a limited size, and for the inclusion of yours into the next block, you must pay a fee. Usually, the calculation is in Satoshi per byte. For example, if your transaction is 10,000 bytes and the current cost on the Bitcoin blockchain is 12 Satoshi per byte, you will have to pay 120,000 Satoshi. As the Bitcoin trading price increases, so do the fees in fiat currency value.

Why are Bitcoin fees so high?

There is plenty of competition, a growing number of transactions, which significantly outstrip the supply of miners. Scaling has become a distinct issue with cryptocurrencies.

How do I know if a Bitcoin broker is regulated?

Each broker provides its regulatory information at the bottom of the homepage. You can then check it against the database of the regulator and verify.

Huzefa Hamid

I’m a trader and manage my own capital. I trade the major Forex pairs, some Futures contracts, and I rely entirely on Technical Analysis to place my trades. Today, I am also a Senior Analyst for DailyForex.com. I began trading the markets in the early 1990s, at the age of sixteen. I had a few hundred British pounds saved up (I grew up in England), with which I was able to open a small account with some help from my Dad. I started my trading journey by buying UK equities that I had read about in the business sections of newspapers. The 1990s were a bull market, so naturally, I made money. I was fortunate enough in my early twenties to have a friend that recommended a Technical Analysis course run by a British trader who emphasized raw chart analysis without indicators. Having this first-principles approach to charts influences how I trade to this day.

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