A Coinsquare Review for 2021
If you want a little Canadian content in your cryptocurrency, Coinsquare might be a good option for you.
You'll find this especially true if you're tired of losing money on U.S. exchange rates and want to buy cryptocurrency in Canadian dollars or fund your account with exclusively Canadian financial instruments, such as Interac e-Transfers.
Are you intrigued? Hopefully, you are! In this Coinsquare review, we'll dive in and help you decide if this Canadian cryptocurrency exchange is suitable to be the go-to for your cryptocurrency needs.
However, be aware that even though Coinsquare is one of the most popular crypto exchange options in Canada, it's not without controversy.
Table of Contents
Coinsquare Review 2021: Overview, Fees, and More
Below, we'll take a look at what Coinsquare has to offer those seeking a cryptocurrency exchange. Let's take a look at Coinsquare's overview, how it works, and fees.
Coinsquare: Overview 2021
Coinsquare is a Toronto-based cryptocurrency exchange founded in 2014. It has a stated mission of providing a safe and easy way for people across the globe to access cryptocurrency markets.
However, it very much caters to the Canadian market due to its accommodation to the deposits in only U.S. and Canadian dollars. Other cryptocurrency exchanges typically do not prioritize Canadian fiat currency in the same way.
If you do deal in Canadian money though, Coinsquare could be your Shangri-La because even though it started out as a Bitcoin exchange, it now has a myriad of cryptocurrencies available for exchange or purchase in addition to Bitcoin, such as Ethereum, Litecoin, Bitcoin Cash, Ripple, Dogecoin, Bitcoin SV, Ethereum Classic, Stellar Lumens, and DASH.
It’s possible for Canadian cryptocurrency traders to use Coinsquare as a vehicle for acquiring smaller U.S. or international altcoins (alternative and boutique cryptocurrencies) cheaply by trading their Canadian dollars into a mainstream cryptocurrency on Coinsquare and then trading for altcoins with the crypto coins they just acquired on a different exchange platform.
Coinsquare is also one of the biggest and most notable cryptocurrency exchanges in Canada, boasting over 100,000 users and over 90 employees.
In addition to serving beginner cryptocurrency needs, they also have a “Wealth” division for those looking to trade $25,000 or more and an advanced trading interface for experienced cryptocurrency traders who aren’t intimidated by digital currency and don’t require the hand-holding of Coinsquare’s user-friendly dashboard.
In 2018, Coinsquare announced a partnership with one of the best banks in Canada but didn’t specify which one.
Coinsquare: How It Works
Getting started with Coinsquare is relatively straightforward. Most people would pick the Coinsquare Quick Trade mobile app that works on iOS or Android to get started over the Advanced Trade app just because the dashboard is so user-friendly. The fact there’s an app at all is a big plus.
All you must do is set your desired amount, the currency you want it in, hit submit and you’ll get an instant cost quote.
The advanced trade version is much more of a traditional trading interface with market and limit orders available.
Setting up your account is easy too. You just create a username and password, (two-factor authentication is available) verify your e-mail address and then verify your account as a whole, which requires a government I.D., a bill, or bank statement, along with your residential address and your mobile number.
Verification only takes a day or less, which is the best outcome you can hope for on a cryptocurrency exchange.
Once verified, you can fund your account using Interac e-Transfer, wire transfer, and direct deposit before exchanging your cash for the cryptocurrency of your choice.
If you’re just looking to buy cryptocurrency in your desired coin, then the quick trade is the right option. But, if you want to exorcise your digital currency day trader dreams, the advance trade exchange is for you. You’ll also pay lower fees and get greater functionality. You get all the charts and can track all the trades, but there are limits to the types of trades you can do. If you want trading versatility, you may want to look elsewhere.
The trading fees you pay depend on the platform you choose. Quick Trade has higher fees. You pay 0.20%* when using Bitcoin (single trades) and 0.40%* for other cryptocurrencies (double trades).
For Advanced Trades, (also called Bit Markets) you pay 0.10%* for a maker order (providing liquidity) and 0.20%* on a taker order (removing liquidity).
Coinsquare charges fees after the settlement of a trade. There are no deposit fees, but withdrawals cost 2%* in addition to the cost to withdraw particular digital currencies.*Rates current as of August 2021
Coinsquare Pros & Cons
Pros: The Good Stuff
Up to 10 cryptocurrencies are available
It only takes a day or less to verify new accounts
Deposit processing is within the cryptocurrency industry (an average of 1-3 days)
User-friendly dashboards for beginner and pro cryptocurrency traders
Referral program (earn $20 per referral)
Cons: The Not So Good Stuff
Only U.S. and Canadian dollars can be accommodated
Customer support is not 24/7
Has had a data breach, exposing personal information for 5,000 users
Regulatory bodies penalized them in 2020 for conducting wash trades (fake trades)
Doesn’t belong to IIROC (Investment Industry Regulatory Organization of Canada) but has an application in.
Doesn’t belong to the CIPF (Canadian Investor Protection Fund)
Our Final Thoughts
If you are Canadian and interested in cryptocurrency, Coinsquare gives you a user-friendly trading interface, multiple cryptocurrencies to exchange and deposit capabilities in line with Canadian banks. Plus, you can trade directly using Canadian dollars.
However, like most cryptocurrency exchanges, there are considerable security risks. Here though, there are also questionable administrators who’ve incurred regulatory penalties.
Frequently Asked Questions
While security at Coinsquare is generally effective, there have been some past issues with the cryptocurrency exchange.
Coinsquare stores private keys for coins offline, air-gapped from the internet. They stress-tested their servers to inoculate against Denial of Service attacks, they manage their ledgers daily to track what’s owed, they provide users the option of two-factor authentication for their password, and they use Secure Sockets Layer protocol for communication security over their network.
However, in June 2020, a disgruntled employee put the personal information of over 5,000 users on the dark web, and, in the same month, the CEO instructed employees to engage in wash trades (buying and selling the same asset to generate the appearance of more trading activity). These actions are concerning, to say the least.
Yes. Coinsquare is a member of the Financial Transactions and Reports Analysis Centre of Canada (FINTRAC) and has submitted applications to the Ontario Securities Commission (OSC) and the Investment Industry Regulatory Organization of Canada (IIROC). This makes Coinsquare one of Canada’s first regulated marketplace for digital assets.
It also has the backing of an unnamed member of Canada’s “Big 5 Banks” and has appointed a former president of the Toronto Stock Exchange (TSX) and a senior vice-president of IIROC, as well as a new CEO, to its board of directors.
No. Coinsquare is not a member of the Canadian Investor Protection Fund (CIPF). So, if the large cryptocurrency exchange were to become insolvent (something that’s more common than it should be in the cryptocurrency industry), users would not be able to recover any money for the value of their cryptocurrency.
Crypto holders will be using Coinsquare and trading without a net, so if you trade on Coinsquare, do so at your own risk, with your eyes wide open.