Kraken reviews and review of the official website of the exchange
The Kraken cryptocurrency exchange was created back in 2011 by Jesse Powell, one of the first bitcoin enthusiasts, as an alternative to the (now closed) Mt.Gox exchange.
Kraken is one of the few large exchanges that has an impeccable reputation for security and has become the first cryptocurrency platform to introduce a Proof-of-Reserves system that cryptographically verifies whether the users’ balances on the exchange match the funds on Kraken wallets.
Registration on the exchange is a fairly standard procedure – you need to go to the exchange website https://www.kraken.com/ru-ru/ (Russian localization) and click the ‘create account’ button in the upper right corner. To create an account you need to create a password (use a complex password, try not to reuse old passwords) and confirm your mail. Immediately after entering the account, the user will be asked to choose a two-factor authentication method.
The Kraken trading interface is divided into three sections: simple, medium and complex.
These sections are targeted at beginners, experienced users, and professionals respectively. A simple interface offers beginners to buy or sell digital assets on a market or limit order. Average settings open options for margin trading (with a maximum leverage of 5x), offer to set the time for opening and canceling an order (if it is not executed). Sophisticated settings expand the options for limit orders and allow you to further customize the conditions for closing an order.
Kraken is unusual in that the standard trading interface does not display familiar charts and other market metrics. To display them, you need to click the Kraken Pro button, which will open the trading interface, very similar to the interface of the Cryptowatch service that Kraken acquired in 2017. There is also a TradingView chart near the button of the trading pair.
In terms of commissions, the Kraken exchange is quite competitive and relatively transparent. “Relative”, because the information on commissions is scattered throughout the site, so it’s rather difficult to evaluate them as a whole. However, commissions are roughly on par with popular exchanges. Like many cryptocurrency exchanges, Kraken has a tariff plan that depends on the trading volumes of traders. Also, this is one of the few exchanges that offers zero commissions for traders with large volumes. For traders with a 30-day trading volume of less than $ 50,000, Kraken charges 0.16% for makers and 0.26% for takers, but this commission is reduced to 0% and 0.10%, respectively, with volumes above $ 10 million.
Trading operations using stablecoins are paid differently, but traders with 30-day trading volumes above $ 1 million can expect a zero commission.
Commissions on deposits and withdrawals in cryptocurrency on Kraken have a rather complicated structure. In general, the withdrawal fee for most cryptocurrencies is quite low, with the exception of USDT ($ 5 for withdrawal).
Below are the fees for some of the most well-known digital assets:
- Bitcoin (presented on Kraken under the ticker XBT) – free deposit, commission for withdrawal 0.0005 XBT. 0.0001 XBT minimum deposit and 0.005 XBT minimum withdrawal amount.
- Ethereum (ETH) – “small commission for transferring ETH to Kraken wallet”, commission for withdrawing 0.005 ETH. 0.05 ETH minimum deposit and 0.01 ETH minimum withdrawal amount.
- XRP – free deposit, 0.02 commission for the withdrawal of XRP. 0.00001 XRP minimum deposit and 25 XRP minimum withdrawal amount.
- Litecoin (LTC) – free deposit, 0.001 LTC withdrawal fee. 0.0001 LTC minimum deposit and 0.01 LTC minimum withdrawal amount.
- Tether (USDT) – free deposit, 5 USDT withdrawal commission. 1 USDT minimum deposit and 10 USDT minimum withdrawal amount.
Verification on Kraken
Like many popular cryptocurrency exchanges, Kraken complies with KYC / AML rules.
The exchange divides user accounts into 4 different levels, each of which offers additional functions, higher limits and more replenishment and withdrawal options. The following levels are available:
Level 0. Entry level for all Kraken accounts that have a verified email address. Zero level users can view the platform, but cannot deposit / withdraw funds or complete transactions.
Base. To reach the first level you need to indicate your full name, date of birth, address of residence and phone number. This will allow you to trade cryptocurrencies, give access to margin trading, but will not allow you to enter, withdraw or trade fiat currencies. First-level accounts do not have maximum limits on cryptocurrency deposits, but are limited to $ 5000 per day for withdrawing cryptocurrencies.
Middle. The second level requires downloading identification cards, documents that confirm the address of residence, passing photo-identification and providing information about the occupation. Second-tier accounts can enter up to $ 100,000 per day or $ 500,000 per month. In addition, second-level accounts allow you to trade fiat pairs, have an increased limit on the withdrawal of cryptocurrencies – $ 500,000 per day. The withdrawal limit for fiat currencies is $ 100,000 per day and $ 500,000 per month.
About. Confirmation of the third level requires the provision of financial statements and verification in the framework of AML (anti-money laundering). After the audit, individual limits will be set, margin trading limits will be increased, and access to the Kraken OTC (OTC) platform will be open.
Assets listed on Kraken
Kraken carefully selects digital assets, so traders who have experience trading, for example, on Binance, listing on this exchange may seem rather meager.
Kraken currently offers margin trading for eight cryptocurrencies. The available leverage for them is at least 2x. The maximum leverage (5x) is available only for bitcoin, ether or XRP.
In general, Kraken focuses on traders who trade top cryptocurrency assets and will not suit those who are “looking for Xs” among tokens and little-known projects.
The exchange is consistently included in the top 50 exchanges in terms of trading volume on CoinMarketCap. The vast majority of volumes are transactions of BTC / USD, BTC / EUR, ETH / USD and ETH / EUR (about 75% of the daily trading volume of Kraken). The daily volume on the exchange is about $ 100 million. Less popular trading pairs have liquidity problems, therefore, again, this is not the best option for those who work with little-known digital assets.
Kraken Reputation and Security
Over 8 years of operation, the Kraken exchange has been able to gain credibility in the crypto industry. The exchange regularly conducts internal audits and tries to demonstrate transparency even in conditions of unfair competition. For example, a large number of less reputable exchanges are engaged in wash-trading in order to artificially increase their trading volumes. A recent report by the Blockchain Transparency Institute showed that no signs of wash trading were found on Kraken, and the exchange (along with Coinbase) provides the most accurate trading data.
However, despite the high reputation of Kraken, on the Internet you can find a lot of negative comments about the platform. Most complaints mention verification problems and slow support. Also in 2017 on the stock exchange more than once there were failures against the backdrop of record trading volumes.
However, when it comes to security, few can compete with Kraken. Today, Kraken is one of the few large cryptocurrency exchanges that has never been hacked.
The head of the exchange, Jesse Powell, says that he and all the employees of the exchange are “chronic paranoiacs.” The exchange pays particular attention to staff. If someone at the company does something suspicious, for example, looks at someone’s account for which there was no corresponding request to the support service, an internal investigation will be launched. Due to the difficulties associated with the personal lives of employees, Kraken recommends that everyone who works in the company do not tell anyone about this (especially on social networks).
To achieve the highest possible level of security, Kraken stores most of its funds in cold wallets geographically distributed across several countries. Kraken servers are monitored around the clock and are protected by armed guards, and a team of cybersecurity experts regularly checks for potential vulnerabilities.
For users, Kraken offers many additional options to protect your account. They include additional two-factor authentication, as well as blocking account settings.
After passing the test of time, Kraken remains one of the leaders among cryptocurrency exchanges in the matter of security.
The exchange is best suited for European traders who want to trade in popular digital assets (bitcoin and ether) in a pair to the euro. The platform is still quite popular among traders from the USA and Canada.
The limited selection of digital assets and the need for verification may alienate some traders. The Russian localization of the exchange also needs to be improved, although its very presence can be considered a plus.