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GDAX

GDAX Review
Trader's rating 1
Editor's rating 4

Trading Accounts

 

Account type Minimum deposit Leverage Maker Fee Taker Fee
Standard Undisclosed 1:3 0% Up to 0.25%

 

GDAX, which stands for Global Digital Asset Exchange, is a company owned by Coinbase. While some of you may know Coinbase for the ability to purchase Bitcoin directly by Credit Card, GDAX is the other part of the company – the exchange aimed at traders. Trading fees at GDAX are much lower and margin trading is available.

 

The company, security of funds

 

Company Country Regulation
Coinbase USA NY BitLicense

 

As mentioned above GDAX is actually a part of San Francisco – based Coinbase. The company holds the New York BitLicnese, which is by its nature an interesting piece of legislation. The New York Department of Financial Services (NYDFS) attempted to make the city a major Bitcoin trading center, the same way it hosts the world’s largest stock exchange. One may argue the idea backfired, as a lot of the key players backed-out of the 2015 proposal. This is due to the burdensome and slow regulatory procedure. As of the summer of 2017 only three companies have received the license and Coinbase is one of them.

 

When it comes to hacking, a major attack has not struck GDAX or Coinbase. That being the case, there was a “flash crash” in Ethereum prices, which raises suspicion. The coin was trading at around $317, when it suddenly spiked to an alleged value of 10 cents and quickly retraced. The company proceeded to halt trading and later claimed this was merely a “fat finger” - single large trader accidentally placed a market sell order, which triggered a chain of stop-loss orders to be executed. Here is а live video, shot by a trader, who has connected a MetaTrader4 platform to his GDAX account (the interesting thing happens around 2:50):

 

 

The public’s concerns, of course, come from the fact GDAX offers margin trading. The company could have manipulated the price, in order to wipe-out traders who were long. All of this is purely speculation.

 

 

Other than this case, the user reviews for GDAX generally match the ones for Coinbase. One of the major concerns of the fans of decentralization in the cryptoverse, is the fact a lot of the investors behind the project are well-established in the traditional financial sector.

 

Trading conditions

 

Trading instruments (cryptocurrencies)

Only three crypto currencies are available at GDAX, namelyBitcoin, Ethereum and Litecoin. Trading is done against USD and EUR, with BTC/GBP also being available, alongside the crypto-crosses ETH/BTC and LTC/BTC.

 

Minimum initial deposit

There is no information on the minimum initial deposit at GDAX, which is not that unusual in the crypto currency sphere. On the other hand, most forex brokers have such a level and disclose it on their websites. For instance the FCA-regulated industry pioneers at IG (who also offer some coins as CFDs) proudly announce they do not have a minimum – you can open an account for as low as you want.

 

Leverage

Margin trading is available on GDAX, with a maximum leverage ratio of 1:3. While this may sound like nothing in comparison to the 1:500, which a lot of forex brokers offer, keep in mind such high levels only apply for fiat currencies, which rarely have price movements bigger than 1-2% per day. 

 

When it comes to crypto, the aforementioned broker IG offers 1:13 in leverage (a 7.5% margin requirement). For a full comparison between crypto-exchanges and forex brokers, who offer Bitcoin trading, read this article.

 

Fees

The costs of trading at GDAX are a lot lower than the ones available at Coinbase. When trading on the exchange, market “makers” (the people who place passive orders and wait for other traders to trigger them) do not pay a fee. Market “takers” (i.e. the “aggressive” traders who directly buy/sell with a market order) pay fees starting from 0.25% and going down for the bigger traders. Both of these levels (especially the free of charge passive trading) are very competitive.

 

Trading platform

 

The platform provided by GDAX, which is web-based, is a lot better than the one offered at Coinbase. That being said, we find the charting lacking when compared to the charts provided by TradigView (which other exchanges have integrated, as well as MetaTrader4, of course. Only a couple of predetermined moving averages are available, in terms of technical indicators. Here is a preview (click to zoom-in):

 

 

The order book is located at the left and the more bizarre design decision to place the “ask” column on top of the “bids” is made. While this may seem strange to experienced traders it does provide a nice graphical representation for beginners. The tape is located to the left, with the middle ground being taken by the chart (which is nothing special) and the open positions tab. 

 

Methods of payment

 

While Coinbase is obviously the main source of clients (and funds) for GDAX, money can also be sent directly to the exchange. This is a massive convenience tool, as accounts can be funded, without the need of paying the hefty Coinbase fees. That being said, Credit/Debit Card deposits can only be made via Coinbase, while GDAX accepts Bank transfers.

 

Conclusion

 

GDAX is a part of Coinbase and more specifically the part of the company, which is targeting more active traders. The fee structure is very competitive, especially with the free market “maker” trades. The selection of trading assets is not great, but the trading platform feels relatively nice (although charting is nothing special). Here is a summary of GDAX: 

 

Pros Cons
New York BitLicense Few altcoins available
Competitive trading fees Suspicion regarding the ETH spike
No major hacks yet  
Accepts Bank Transfers  
Relatively nice trading platform  

 

EverFX

EverFX Review
Trader's rating 3.6
Editor's rating 4.2

Account Types

 

Account Type   Min.Deposit  Min. Trade Size Maximum Leverage Average Spreads (& Commission)
Standard $300 0.01 1:500 0.2 pips + $6 per round lot
Premium $5 000 0.01 1:500 0.2 pips + $5 per round lot
VIP $20 000 0.01 1:200 0.2 pips + $4 per round lot

 

EverFX offers its clients a choice of several basic account types, depending on the initial investment. As this brokerage is a pure STP one, all accounts provide tight variable spreads, starting out at 0 pips. Commission fees and leverage, on the other hand, vary by account type.

 

In addition, EverFX offers swap-free (Islamic) accounts, which are Sharia compliant (for Muslim investors who are unwilling to earn and pay interest for religious reasons).

 

Keep in mind that EverFX does not offer Contracts for Difference to residents of certain jurisdictions such as the USA, Iran, Canada and North Korea.

 

The Company. Security of Funds

 

Company

Country

Regulation

ICC Intercertus Capital Limited

Cyprus

CySEC

 

With EverFX you can trade in currencies, metals, indices, energies, commodities and bonds on the good old MetaTrader 4. In addition, the brokerage offers high-quality educational tools. 

 

EverFX is a trademark of ICC Intercertus Capital Limited and is regulated by Cyprus Exchange and Securities Commission (CySEC).

 

As UK is preparing to leave the European Union, Cyprus is gaining more and more popularity as an attractive forex broker destination in Europe.

 

The Cypriot financial watchdog applies certain rules and requirements to Cyprus Investment Firms. For instance, they must hold at least €730,000 as a proof of financial stability. Besides, the Commission requires forex brokers to keep customer funds in segregated accounts, separated from the company’s operating funds.

 

As a further guarantee to clients’ funds, all CySEC-regulated companies are members of the Investor Compensation Fund, which is able to pay compensation up to 20,000 EUR, If the company is in default. Similar compensation schemes apply in other jurisdictions.

 

Additionally, every CySEC-regulated investment company is also MiFID compliant and therefore entitled to offer cross-border services in all EU Member States.

 

Trading Conditions

 

Minimum Initial Deposit

In order to open the Standard account with EverFX, and trade with some of the lowest spreads in the market, traders have to invest just $300 – which is very fair considering the savings on trading.

 

Spreads & Commissions

All account types with EverFX offer one and the same variable spreads, which are pretty tight, averaged 0.3 pips on EUR/USD. Commission fees, however, vary from $4 to $8 per traded lot (round trip). So basically, trading costs on the Standard account are below 1 pip EUR/USD (spread averaged 0.2 pips on EUR/USD + $6 commission = approximately 0.8 pips) per standard lot. This is a really competitive pricing, as most brokers offer spreads within the range of 1.0 – 1.5 pips for this pair. 

 

For more information, you may look up real-time spreads of 15 leading brokers here.

 

Leverage

EverFX offers high leverage levels, reaching is 1:500. In an attempt to protect traders with the risks associated with trading at high leverage, the Cypriot financial watchdog proposed default leverage levels to be 1:50. Nonetheless, most Cypriot brokers still offer leverage ratios, which are significantly higher: FXTM - up to 1:500 and XM – up to 1:888. You may check out more forex brokers offering leverage equal to or exceeding 1:500 here.

 

Trading Platform

 

This broker offers two platforms to its clients. One of them is the most commonly used forex trading platform - MetaTrader4 (MT4), available in all forms and shapes: for PC, MAC, tablet, mobile and web version.

 

MT4 is internationally acclaimed for its wide range of built-in technical indicators and Expert Advisors (EAs), which users are able to get ready-made or create ones of their own, extensive back-testing options for them, as well as the advanced charting tools and user-friendly interface.

 

More brokers using the MT4 can be viewed here.

 

Additionally EverFX has developed their own unique web-based solution, (which will also be available for mobile devices soon). The Status platform provides an easy access to the forex market, while also packing some advanced functionality. There are two sidebars, which can be extended inwards, toward the chart, revealing the instrument list and news section. Here is a preview:

 

 

At the same time the bottom section is very intuitive. This platform feels like a solid choice for the beginner and veteran alike.

 

Promotions

EverFX often launches various promotions, such as a Refer-a-Friend program or Zero Trading Cost promotion.

 

Methods of Payment

 

The following payment methods are available to EverFX clients: credit/debit cards (Visa, MasterCard), bank wire transfer and e-wallet payment systems, such as Skrill, Neteller, and Webmoney.

 

There is no minimum withdrawal amount with this broker.

 

Conclusion

 

EverFX is a FX and CFD broker that supports the popular MetaTrader 4 platform and utilizes a pure straight-through-processing execution model. Besides, it is duly regulated by CySEC to operate in all EU countries. To sum up the above, here are the advantages and drawbacks with regards to this broker:

 

Pros Cons
Well-regulated  
MT4 available     
Tight spreads, starting at 0 pips  
Pure STP execution  
Low initial deposit  
Promotions offered from time to time  

 

Forex
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