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Cex.io Review 2020 – Pros and Cons of Trading on CEX
Money Transfer Fees: 1 to 5 %
- established exchange with good levels of security.
- simple, intuitive and minimalistic interface.
- unlimited withdrawals
- high trading volume
- mobile app
- various payment methods
- relatively high fees.
- limited number of currencies supported.
- getting in touch with them is not as straightforward as it should be.
- no advanced order types
Cex.io was founded on January 2013 by Oleksandr Lutskevych, it was initially associated with the now closed cloud mining site GHash.io, which contributed to the early success of the exchange. In years following it, the company managed to start offering card payment deposits, added many fiat markets, released a mobile app, and finally, in October 2016 – launched margin trading that in 2019/2020 should have got moved to dedicated CEX.io Broker website. However, as of now the margin trading “broker” area is still in beta mode and can only be used in demo mode.
So there is no option to trade with leverage on Cex.io at the moment.
The Bitcoin trading platform is based in the United Kingdom, with physical offices in 4th Floor One Canada Square, Canary Wharf London E14 5AB, United Kingdom, and a sister company registered at 101 Hudson Street, 21st Floor, Jersey City, NJ 07302.
The daily trading volume of the site these days is around 2,242 BTC (approximately 5.6 million USD). Eight trading pairs are offered: ETH/USD, BTC/USD, ETH/BTC, BTC/EUR, BTC/GBP, BTC/RUR, ETH/EUR and GHS/BTC (GHS from their legacy mining venture), with the first three accounting for most of the volume (44.23%, 32.22% and 16.66% respectively).
This year the site has dropped support for some altcoins including Dogecoin, Namecoin and Litecoin (which used to be actively traded on the platform).
Services are offered worldwide, in about 95% of the countries, with exceptions depending on every particular deposit / withdrawal method. The following countries are partially restricted, with specific details available in the Cex.io website.
Afghanistan, Côte d’Ivoire, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Haiti, Iceland, Iran, Iraq, Kenya, Liberia, Libya, Nigeria, North Korea, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, São Tomé and Príncipe, Tanzania, Tunisia, Turkey, Vietnam, Yemen, Zimbabwe.
Cex.io has adopted AML/KYC policies, as it holds an MSB status with the FinCEN, and notably requires American citizens to verify their identity before depositing fiat. Due to US regulations CEX can’t offer higher leverage than up to 1:3.
Trading Pairs Offered By Cex.io
Cex.io supports 54 trading pairs, among 15 most popular cryptocurrencies, while greatly focusing stability and compliance.
Coins supported by Cex.io:
- BTC : EUR/GBP/USD/RUB
- ETH : EUR/GBP/USD
- BCH : EUR/GBP/USD
- BTG : EUR/USD
- DASH : EUR/USD
- LTC : EUR/USD
- XRP : EUR/USD
- XLM : EUR/USD
- TRX : EUR/USD
- BTT : EUR/USD
- MHC : EUR/USD
By incorporating Fill-or-Kill orders, part of the services offered by Cex.io are aimed at new and inexperienced traders. Such orders ensure that the trade is executed in full, at a specified price, or totally rejected. It works by locking the price for 120 seconds, during which a customer will have time to enter the desired amount of coins or money willing to spend. On the other hand, the company also offers a more advanced trading platform, which much lower fees. Where a Fill-or-Kill can cost you up to 7% in fees, the advanced platform will only 0.25%.
Keep in mind that Cex.io is a cryptocurrency exchange, where you will be able to deposit and withdraw all supported coins freely. The full list of offered pairs has grown significantly over the years, and the full list can be found here.
Since October 2016, the company was offering a CFD trading platform, where you could execute both long and short positions. Because the company is fully regulated, the maximum margin offered can be 1:3, where your funds cover 33% of the whole position. Since 2019 company decided to offer this service via a dedicated CEX.io Broker website. By registering and verifying your account, you will be able to trade
Cex.io is is a registered Money Service Business under American The Financial Crimes Enforcement Network, a bureau of the United States Department of the Treasury. Additionally, the company supports KYC and AML policies, as well as offers 2FA for greater security and compliance. Please keep in mind that although the exchange is registered in the U.S, as for now it is not supported in: Arkansas, New Texas, Mississippi, Colorado, Guam, North Alabama, Ohio, Alaska, Vermont, Georgia, Tennessee, Carolina, Dakota, Kansas, Louisiana, Virginia, Arizona, Idaho, Virgin Florida, Maryland, North Michigan, Nebraska, Islands, Oregon and Iowa.
Using The Cex.io Site
Cex.io doesn’t offer a demo or anonymous accounts, and because the company supports fiat deposits and withdrawals, it needs to meet all regulatory requirements of American FinCEN. Additionally, the company supports, stores, and processes card payments, and because of that it has to meet all security standards listed under Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS).
The process is simple and straightforward, social login (via Facebook, Google Plus, Vkontakte and Github) is offered as an alternative, but the traditional e-mail / password combination is available too.
After signing up and clicking the confirmation e-mail, the site prompts to activate 2FA (either through Google Authenticator or with SMS / call verification). While it is possible to skip it, the site strongly encourages adding a second security step and makes the user acknowledge that he is responsible for anything that could happen if the extra protection is not set.
Cex.io prompts to enable 2FA after confirming an account
After having been optional formerly, Identity verification is meanwhile mandatory. The process is as easy as filling a couple of forms, scanning documents (ID and residence certificate) and taking a picture holding the ID, and then uploading them to the platform and waiting for their personnel to validate the provided information.
Funding The Account
Three options to deposit are offered: credit cards (VISA and MasterCard), bank transfers and through CryptoCapital (Bitcoin). Four fiat currencies are accepted (USD, EUR, RUR, GBP) and two cryptocurrencies (BTC and ETH). Deposits in Russian Rubles are only received from credit cards. There are minimum deposit amounts for cryptocurrencies, depending on the coin: 0.001 for ETH; 0.0001 for BTC, ZEC, BCH, BTG, and DASH each.
Concerning fiat withdrawals, there are suggested minima for every payment method (20 USD / EUR, 1,200 RUR and 15 GBP for credit cards and 100 USD / EUR and 80 GBP for bank transfers).
Deposit (as well as withdrawal) limits depend on the type of account. A brand new user starts with a Basic account, which can be upgraded to Verified submitting the required documentation. Verified members may apply to become Verified Plus or for a Corporate account.
The last two tiers have no limits, while the standard accounts do have as is listed below:
The fees on Cex.io are considerably higher than in other exchanges, principally when it comes to withdrawing. These fees are the ones charged by Cex.io and do not include any additional commissions generated by third parties.
Makers are charged nothing, while taker fees depend on the personal traded volume in the last 30 days. The highest rate charged is 0.2%, which can get as low as 0.1% for volumes higher than 6,000 BTC.
Using The Platform: The Dashboard
The Dashboard is minimalistic and intuitive. Everything needed to trade is contained within the trade page.
On top of the page there are charts, by default candlesticks and market depth are shown. The charts are complex enough and quite configurable to better monitor the market. Currency pairs are displayed as buttons, which besides switching the data for charts also display value changes in real time (each button becomes green or red if the associated price goes up or down).
Scrolling down, there are three tabs: Limit, Market and Margin trading. The first two allow to place orders, the only two supported by the site. The margin trading tap leads to the beta platform for margin trading that will get live at an unknown point in the future.
Active orders are listed on the lowermost part of the page, with options to manage them (listed in the “Actions” field for every position) and to close all at once.
Using The Platform: The App
Enabling The App On A New Phone:
Configuring the app takes no more than a couple of seconds: going to account settings, choosing the appropriate tab and generating a new activation key. After that, the only necessary step is scanning a QR code from the app.
Security On Cex.io
There is no record of the website having been hacked, with only an isolated report dating back to 2013, whose authenticity is dubious.
As it was already mentioned, the site strongly encourages activating 2FA. Their procedures to securely store, process and transmit their customer’s credit card information are certified by the Payment Card Industry Security Standard Council (PCI SSC). The site also features an activity tracker, which lists relevant actions on the account with date and IP.
There is no option to enable SMS or email alerts, besides 2FA / SMS / phone verification. E-mails from Cex.io are not encrypted but sent over a VPN.
Cex.io is one of the oldest exchanges out there, and over the years the company managed to transform itself into a professional, fully regulated cryptocurrency exchange. To register an account every customer has to provide detailed personal information, verify an email, as well as a mobile phone number. What is more, the company offers not only supports multi-signature cold storage for customer coins, buy partnered with trusted and reputable banks around the world. All fiat deposits made by U.S customers are covered by an FDIC insurance, up to a maximum of $250,000.
Formerly, the site had received mixed reviews. Users on Trustpilot had given it an average 3.9/10 rating, with most complains having been due to slow and extremely difficult verification processes and impossibility to withdraw funds from the site. Most reviewers were first timers, but the huge number of bad reviews and the level of detail given suggested legitimacy at that time, before the service obviously started to improve.
There had been some critics on Bitcointalk and reddit too (also about buying btc from cex.io and is cex a sam?), with the first mainly focused on their defunct cloud mining operations and the latter mostly consisting of mixed opinions about the site in comments.
Because of the now improved user experience, the overall score improved significantly, along with the advantages of using the platform:
- Established exchange with good levels of security
- Simple, intuitive and minimalistic interface
- Regulated by U.S based FinCEN and available in some U.S states
- Good amount of supported cryptocurrency
- Dedicated CFD platform with 1:3 leverage
- Greatly improved customer support
- Supports wide range of fiat deposits
- Supports SEPA, ACH and card payments
- Relatively high fees.
- Extensive verification process
Cex.io is for those who want an easy-to-use and secure platform. After not so great start, the company went above and beyond to meet user expectations, with quite good results. Because of the amount of offered services, the company will be great both for new investors, as well as experienced traders as soon as margin trading goes live. It’s worth to mention their greatly improved customer support, which, without a doubt, had the most significant impact on improving the overall experience of using the platform.