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Crypto Facilities

Crypto Facilities Review
Trader's rating 5
Editor's rating 3.6

Trading accounts

 

Account type Minimum deposit Leverage Maker Fee Taker Fee
Standard Undisclosed 1:50* 0 0.0008 XTB*

* Trading conditions at this exchange are more specific due to the nature of the products available for trading. For more details check the full review.

 

Crypto Facilities is a platform for cryptocurrency futures trading. This makes them one of the options for miners, looking to hedge their exposure. The most well-known other similar platform is BitMEX.

 

The company, security of funds

 

Company Country Regulation
CRYPTO FACILITIES LTD UK FCA

 

Crypto Facilities is registered in the United Kingdom and more importantly overseen by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). This is very unusual as the British watchdog usually doesn’t look at companies dealing in the crypto-space. That being said, this is derivatives trading company, and the crypotocurrencies are only the underlying asset.

 

While the FCA oversees a lot of companies (like forex brokers) and enforces a lot of rules, there are a few specifics in regards to Crypto Facilities. You are probably familiar with the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS), especially if you have read some of our reviews on forex brokers. This is a mechanism, which guarantees client funds, in case their brokerage goes bankrupt. As point 3.2 of the Membership Agreement at Crypto Facilities states, the FSCS does not apply, as your account balance is kept in cryptocurrencies, which are not yet defined as either “money” nor a “Specified Investment”. 

 

That being said, all of the client accounts are held in segregated cold-storage wallets, backed by Elliptic, an industry-leading crypto-security company. Additionally the blockchain settlement is insured by an “A-rated, Fortune 100 underwriter”. Given the fact the company is based in the UK, you probably have a pretty good idea of which insurer they are referring to, presuming you have any knowledge of that market. 

 

With such major security claims, it probably wouldn’t surprise you to hear that Crypto Facilities has not been hacked yet. In general, this company appears to be much more secure than a lot of the traditional cryptocurrency exchanges.

 

There aren’t that many user reviews on Crypto Facilities, which is understandable, given the relatively complicated nature of their offering. The few comments we found were all positive.

 

Trading conditions

 

Account types (cash and margin)

Before we begin discussing the trading conditions at Crypto Facilities, we must reiterate that the accounts are only kept in Bitcoin and Ripple. Additionally, before you begin trading, you must transfer coins (internally) between your main (cash) account and one of your margin accounts. The latter vary by trading instrument. While all of this seems very complicated, in reality it isn’t. Here is how the wallet interface looks:

 

 

Each of your secondary wallets serves as your trading balance for that particular futures contract. This provides a form of risk management, which is always appreciated. 

 

 

Trading instruments (cryptocurrencies)

Crypto Facilities supports Bitcoin (with the newly agreed upon symbol XBT, instead of the more traditional BTC) and Ripple (XRP) futures trading. There are several instruments, with varying trading conditions. 

 

The “classic” futures contracts are XBT/USD and XRP/USD. Additionally, a XRP/XTB cross is available, as well as the more short-term oriented “Bitcoin Turbo”, which allows trading with higher leverage. 

 

The standard contract size at Crypto Facilities is 1 Bitcoin and 10,000 Ripple, for the respective contracts.

 

Trades are settled Wednesday around 17:00 UTC, but mature the previous Friday.

 

Leverage

The leverage ratios at Crypto Facilities vary by instrument. The “classic” Bticoin and Ripple futures are being traded at a 1:6 and 1:8, respectively.  

 

The “turbo” bitcoin contracts are traded at 1:50, which is very high given the fact this derivative is based on cryptocurrencies. The XRP/XTB maximum leverage is limited to 1:5.

 

Margin netting, between long and short positions is available, presuming you trade from the same margin portfolio. 

 

We must mention, that there are other derivatives based on digital assets. These are the spot CFDs, available at some forex brokers. While Bitcoin and Ethereum are the most popular, Litecoin is also occasionally being offered. While these CFDs are linked to the current price of the asset in question and not the future value, they do have some further specifics. You can read all about them here, if you are interested.

 

Fees

The fees at Crypto Facilities are charged in XBT and XRP, in accord with the specific contracts. Traders who place passive orders in the book, commonly referred to as market makers (not to be confused with brokers, who are market makers) trade for free. On the other hand the aggressive traders who hit the first available bid/ask currently pay fees varying between 0.0008 XTB and 8 XRP. Keep in mind these may be changed in the future, if significant price moves in the cryptocurrency space occur.

 

While we would like to compare these conditions to the ones provided at BitMEX, this would be a hard task, as their structure is percentage-based. The taker fee at BitMEX is 0.075%, while market makers get a 0.025% rebate (which is even better than free trading).

 

 

Summary 

 

While the above description of the trading conditions may appear complicated, here is a table, summarizing it all:

 

  Bitcoin-Dollar Futures Bitcoin-Dollar Turbo Ripple-Dollar Futures Ripple-Bitcoin Futures
Ticker F-XBT:USD F-XBT:USD F-XRP:USD F-XRP:XBT
Contract Size 1 bitcoin 1 bitcoin 10,000 Ripple XRP 10,000 Ripple XRP
Leverage 6x 50x 8x 5x
Maturities 1W, 2W, 1Q, 2Q, 3Q 1W, 2W 1W, 2W, 1Q, 2Q, 3Q 1W, 2W, 1Q, 2Q, 3Q
Maker Fee 0 0 0 0
Taker Fee 0.0008 XTB 0.0008 XTB 8 XRP 0.00012 XTB

 

Trading platform

 

The trading platform at Crypto Facilities is web-based. While this shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone familiar with cryptocurrencies, there is an argument to be made for desktop solutions.  The main one is that some of them are less intensive on the hardware, like MetaTrader4. That being said let’s take a look at the main trading interface at Crypto Facilities:

 

 

The most obvious thing to note is the absence of a chart. This is not at all common, but given the relatively complicated nature of this exchange, those who use it, probably have external sources of charting or use an API.

 

The order book is placed on the left and is vertical. While this is a popular theme in the crypto-sphere, most trading veterans probably dislike it. The tape is placed on the far-right, which is surprisingly far away from the book, which is a bit of a dubious design decision.

 

The middle section is dedicated to everything else. The order placing module, while looking cool, is a bit clunky, when compared to more traditional solutions. 

 

Despite the lack of charting in the main section, the “analytics” section offers this functionality, although it is a bit basic. Here is how the index charting looks (The overall index allows comparison to the quotes provided by Bitstamp, Bitfinex, BTC-E, Coinbase and ItBit.):

 

 

And here is a preview of the futures curves, which allow one to see if the market is in a contango or backwardatiwon:

 

 

Our opinion of the Crypto Facilities platform is neutral. While it offers some futures-specific elements, the main trading window is less than ideal. Additional tools will probably needed for serious trading.

 

 

Methods of payment

 

The only way of transferring funds in and out of Crypto Facilities is the blockchain. Once you register an account, you are given Bitcoin and Ripple wallets, to facilitate your trading. As mentioned above the control to specify how much to put into each margin wallet and how much to leave as “cash” is a neat feature.

 

Conclusion

 

Crypto Facilities is a London-based cryptocurrency futures trading platform, overseen by the FCA. While the they do not participate in the FSCS, they still follow other major rulings. The company’s overall security appears to be much higher than what is currently offered by other exchanges. That being said, trading at Crypto Facilities is not for everybody. The mere concept of futures trading is somewhat more complicated than the usual. Add the volatility of cryptocurrencies on top of that and you get a potentially explosive combination. More experienced traders, as well as miners looking to hedge their “virtual crops” may find this to be one of their best options. Here are the pros and cons of Crypto Facilities:

 

Pros

Cons

FCA-regulated  Complicated trading environment
Top-tier security features PnL measured in Bitcoin or Ripple
Blockchain settlement insured Only accepts blockchain transfers
Futures curve analysis tools  

 

OnlyTrades

OnlyTrades Review
Trader's rating 2.3
Editor's rating 1

Trading Accounts

 

Account type Minimum deposit  Maximum leverage Spread
Basic/Micro $5,000 1:200 From 2 pips*
Gold/ Exclusive Unknown 1:200* From 2 pips*
Premium/VIP Unknown 1:200* From 2 pips*

 

*The broker has a lot of issues with presenting the information it offers and we are not certain about the validity of these conditions.

 

OnlyTrades is allegedly a forex broker. The company’s website offers multiple versions of the trading conditions and we can’t be certain which are true. Here are a couple of screenshots (Click to zoom in):

 

 

Furthermore at the time of writing of this review, real accounts can’t log-in the trading platform, while demo ones can not be created. 

 

The Company. Security of Funds

 

Company Country Regulation
Marantino Capital  Malta N/A

 

The company behind OnlyTrades is Marantino Capital, which is registered in Malta. That being the case, they do not claim any affiliation with the Malta Financial Services Authority (MFSA). Had they been registered with the watchdog, they would have been a lot more credible. 

 

Malta is an EU Member State, and as such is part of the The Markets in Financial Instruments Directive (MiFID) framework. These are a set of unified rules, regarding the financial services sector, which allow brokerages registered in one EU country to operate freely in the entire single market (although there are some specifics in certain places). One of the key MiFID regulations, in terms of the security of clients’ funds, is the minimum capital requirement of € 730,000. This high entry barrier prevents scammers from registering. 

 

As an example, Cyprus is also an EU Member and is part of MIFID. Furthermore, the country is much more popular with forex brokers. You may have heard of its regulatory agency CySEC. It applies additional regulations, like the mandatory segregation of client funds. In essence, it dictates a broker must keep traders’ capital in special bank accounts, which it can not freely access. On top of that brokers must participate in the local compensation scheme – an insurance like mechanism, which serves to protect clients in case the firm they trade with goes under. If you are dealing with a CySEC-regulated broker, your account will be covered up to €20,000.

 

Trading Conditions

 

Minimum Initial Deposit

OnlyTrades requires a minimum initial deposit of $5,0000. This is way out of line with the contemporary state of the industry, where brokers constantly lower the entry barrier, in order to attract new clients. Take FXTM, for instance – you can open a cent account there with as low as $5.

 

While we often mention the minimum deposit does not speak volumes, in terms of a company’s credibility, this may be one of the few exceptions. An unregulated entity demanding so much from a new client seems fishy. Brokers, who offer real-stock trading (with no leverage) often require such sums, but that is due to their service (not to mention they are regulated).

 

Average spreads & Commissions

OnlyTrades doesn’t reveal anything about its spreads. Furthermore the platform can not be started and while this may be a temporary issue, it reaffirms the negative impression. After downloading the platform, we saw 4-digit quotes, with spreads starting from 2 pips. They may be fixed, but there is no way of knowing that. If these are the real conditions, they are at the high range of fixed spreads. As a comparison, FxPro provides fixed spreads, starting from 1.6 pips. That being said they also offer variable spreads, which are usually even lower. In order to compare the spreads, which some of the world’s leading brokers offer, feel free to go to our dedicated real-time spread comparison page

 

Leverage

OnlyTrades allegedly provides a 1:200 leverage ratio. While this may appear to be high in some traders’ eyes, there are brokers who provide even higher ratios, like 1:500.

 

Keep in mind, trading with high leverage is very risky and can lead to losses, which occur swiftly. Be sure to fully understand the risk involved in forex trading before participationg.

 

Trading Platforms

 

MetaTrader4(MT4) is the platform, by which OnlyTrades provide their services. As we mentioned previously, their iteration does not appear to be running (at least, at this point in time). That being said, MT4 is still a great platform, which is provided by multiple brokerages. It offers one of the best charting solutions out there and an easy-to-learn programming environment. The latter, when combined with the platform’s popularity has led to the creation of thousands of new technical analysis indicators and automated trading systems

 

Here is what the OnlyTrades MT4 looks like:

 

 

We got the 2 pips spread educated ques from here, although we couldn’t log-in the platform. 

 

Methods of Payment

 

The methods of payment at OnlyTrades include the more traditional Bank Transfer and Credit/Debit Card and a few on-line solutions, such as Qiwi, WebMoney, Yandex. It is quite obvious the company is targeting the Russian market, with this offering.

 

Conclusion

 

OnlyTrades is an unregulated company. As such they basically have very low credibility in our eyes. The company demands a $5,000 initial deposit, which is very high. The presentation of the trading conditions is of very low quality. Dem accounts can’t be created at this point in time an the real ones can’t logg-in the platform. We will update this review if the situation changes, but at this point things aren’t looking good at OnlyTrades: Here is a summary:

 

Pros Cons
MetaTrader4 Platform Unregulated company
  Poor presentation of trading condtions
  Possibly high spreads
  High minimum initial deposit
  Couldn’t create demo accounts (currently)
  Couldn’t log-in with a real account (currently)

 

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