Bitstamp – Safe Licensed Bitcoin Cryptocurrency Trading Exchange?
Bitstamp is a Luxembourg-based bitcoin exchange that promises to be a safe, simple, and licensed way to trade bitcoin. Here’s our Bitstamp review.
What Is Bitstamp?
Bitstamp, found online at Bitstamp.net, is an exchange used by 700,000 traders worldwide. The exchange is fully licensed in Luxembourg and is available to traders around the world.
Originally founded in 2011, Bitstamp is one of the world’s largest bitcoin exchanges by volume (it was actually the world’s second largest exchange by volume at certain points in 2016).
Bitstamp was founded to compete with Japan’s Mt. Gox. It was designed as a European alternative to Mt. Gox, more focused on the Euro market. Today, Bitstamp allows trading via USD, although you can easily transfer EUR to the platform.
Bitstamp is led by CEO Nejc Kodrič, who founded the company in August 2011. The company was originally founded in Kodric’s native Slovenia, but moved to the UK in April 2013 and then to Luxembourg in 2016.
- Licensed in Luxembourg: Bitstamp claims to be the first fully licensed bitcoin exchange in the EU.
- No Hidden Fees: Bitstamp offers transparent, volume-based pricing with no hidden fees.
- Instant Trading: You can trade instantly and deposit instantly with all major credit cards.
- Secure and Transparent: Bitstamp holds 98% of its funds offline. The funds are subject to quarterly audits by one of the Big Four.
- Mobile Support: Bitstamp apps are available on iOS and Android.
- Web Browser: All Bitstamp features are accessible through a web browser on any device.
- API Support: Bitstamp’s application programming interface (API) allows clients to access and control their accounts using customized software. Bitstamp’s API support includes HTTP API, Websocket API, and FIX. The only restriction with APIs is that you can’t make more than 600 requests per 10 minute period (you’ll get banned).
Most small Bitstamp traders will pay a fee of 0.25% per trade. Volume discounts take effect when trading more than 18,000 EUR in a 30 day period. Discounts continue up a sliding scale, all the way up to traders who trade more than 18 million EUR in a 30 day period, in which case you pay a 0.10% trading fee.
Meanwhile, EUR/USD trades have a flat fee of 0.20%.
Transferring funds from your Bitstamp account to your card comes with a flat $10 fee for amounts up to $1,000. For transfers above $1,000, you’ll be charged a 2% fee. Purchase fees (in-store or online) are set at $0.35, while SEPA deposits are free of charge (SEPA withdrawals are charged at 0.90 EUR).
Credit card purchases are assessed a fee of $8%, although that fee drops to as low as 5% for purchases over $5000 USD/5000 EUR.
Bitcoin deposits and withdrawals are free.
You can view the complete Bitstamp fee structure on their website. The exchange, like most other cryptocurrency exchanges, is very clear about its pricing, and outlines all its fees upfront with no hidden fees.
Bitstamp was founded in August 2011 by current CEO Nejc Kodrič and Damijan Merlak. The company was originally based in the founders’ native country, Slovenia, but eventually moved to the UK in April 2013, before moving to Luxembourg in 2016.
The reason for moving outside of Slovenia was a lack of financial and legal services available in the country. Meanwhile, the company moved outside of the UK because regulatory authorities told them that bitcoin was not classed as a currency, so their exchange could not be licensed or regulated.
Finally, Bitstamp reached an agreement with the government of Luxembourg. The country granted a license to Bitstamp to be fully regulated as a legal EU payment institution. That means Bitstamp can do business in all 28 EU member states.
Today, Bitstamp continues to display a London, UK address on its official website (5 New Street Square). You can contact the company by email at firstname.lastname@example.org. They also list an office in Luxembourg and another office for Bitstamp USA Inc. in New York.
In addition to CEO Nejc Kodrič, key members of the team include David Osojnik (CTO), Stéphane Leloup (Chief Compliance Officer), Vasja Zupan (COO), and Bénédicte Keith (CFO).
Bitstamp is one of the oldest bitcoin exchanges on the internet. Founded in 2011, the exchange is fully licensed in Luxembourg as a legal EU payment institution. Today, the exchange offers fees of around 0.25% per trade.
Overall, Bitstamp doesn’t have quite as many pairs as other exchanges. The company chooses instead to maintain higher liquidity in a smaller number of pairs.
To learn more about Bitstamp, or to open an account today, visit the exchange online at Bitstamp.net.