A Kraken Review for 2021
Kraken is a crypto exchange for retail traders and institutional investors to buy, sell, and trade cryptocurrency.
With Kraken, you can easily deposit and withdraw funds, measure your portfolio's performance, and keep track of all your crypto in one convenient place.
Since 2011, Kraken has earned a reputation for being one the largest and most secure cryptocurrency exchanges on the market. The platform supports international exchanges in 190 countries using over 50 virtual currencies, including Bitcoin, Etherum, and Dogecoin.
This Kraken review covers everything Canadians need to know about what Kraken is, how it works, and the pros and cons of using this popular crypto exchange to achieve financial freedom.
Table of Contents
A Kraken Review for 2021
Kraken provides a variety of services for institutions, businesses, and individuals. Being one of the world's largest crypto exchanges, Kraken offers a boatload of features, including some that aren't available on other platforms.
Kraken has a few unique features that place it at the forefront of crypto exchanges. Learn more about the features that Kraken offers crypto enthusiasts below.
- Margin Trading: Maximize returns with up to five times the leverage. Make spot purchases and sales of cryptocurrencies using funds that may exceed the balance of your account.
- Account Management: Upgraded support for advanced traders. Clients who consistently trade are assigned a personal account representative.
- Comprehensive Security: Client assets are safeguarded with layers of security features, including data encryption, geographically distributed coin storage, and rigorous penetration testing.
- Futures: Buy or sell an asset at a later date for a fixed price. Futures trading is typically used to lock in profits when trading in volatile markets.
- Staking: Maximize your holdings that would otherwise be sitting in your account. You will receive rewards twice a week from your staked assets.
- 24/7 Support: If you're awake, Kraken is too. The 24/7 live chat connects you with a team of experts for a quick and efficient resolution.
- Indices: Access up-to-the-second cryptocurrency pricing data powered by CF Benchmarks. You can trade with confidence, knowing that pricing is an accurate reflection of market value.
- Liquidity: High trading volume equals more liquidity. Kraken is among the top exchanges by volume with some of the lowest trading fees—the perfect combination for maximum cryptocurrency liquidity.
Once your Kraken account is funded with fiat, you can buy, sell, or convert a wide range of cryptocurrencies and cash.
Trading fees are charged when an order is executed (matched with another client's order).
The fees can range from 0%* to 0.26%* of the total cost (value) of your order depending on the currency pair that is being traded, your 30-day trading volume (in USD), and whether your order is maker (not immediately matched with an order) or taker (immediately matched with an order).
If you are trading using leverage, margin fees are charged based on the total value of the order.*Rates current as of August 2021
Kraken: Funding Methods
Kraken offers five main investment options:
- Crypto assets
- Fiat assets
- Futures trading
- Margin trading
- Over-the-counter (OTC) trading.
Before you can start buying and selling, you will need to deposit funds into your Kraken account.
Clients can select their preferred funding method using cryptocurrency or fiat currency (government-issued currency) through wire transfers, debit and credit card purchases, and ACH online banking.
Each funding option has its own minimums, maximums, and fees for funding the account.
What is Kraken?
Kraken is a cryptocurrency exchange known for its low fees, versatile funding options, and rigorous security standards.>
Based in San Francisco, California, Jesse Powell founded Kraken in 2011 to give people the means to buy and sell crypto online with ease.
Today, Kraken offers more than 50 cryptocurrencies to trade in 190 countries. The company is legally known as Payward, Inc., but it does business as Kraken.
How Does Kraken Work?
Similar to the stock exchange, Kraken facilitates the buying and selling of cryptocurrencies by retail traders and institutional investors, meaning that orders from clients who want to buy cryptocurrencies are matched with orders from clients who want to sell cryptocurrencies (or vice versa).
In traditional financial exchanges, direct market access is restricted to a handful of institutions that require clients to use brokers to participate.
Kraken gives verified clients direct market access, effectively bypassing the need for a broker.
Kraken: Pros & Cons
Pros: The Good Stuff
Fees: Compared to other popular crypto exchanges that charge an average of 0.50%* for transactions, Kraken's trading fees range from 0%* to 26%*. Because Kraken fees are volume-based, the more you trade, the less you pay on subsequent trades. The affordable fee schedule also motivates trade volume to drive maximum liquidity.*Rates current as of August 2021
Secure Trading: Kraken takes its commitment to security seriously, being one of the only crypto exchanges to have never been hacked. Their global team of top security professionals uses several sophisticated measures to safeguard your funds, including SSL and data encryption, granular API key permissions with range boundaries, and 24/7 video and armed surveillance of servers.
Cons: The Not So Good Stuff
Advanced Interface: While Kraken markets its platform as a crypto exchange for everyone, the user interface isn't intuitive for first-time traders. Kraken offers a lot of bells and whistles, which can be overwhelming for beginners.
Limited Support: 24/7 live chat is an impressive feature but is it the only method of customer service. You will find plenty of reviews that say chat response times are slow or non-existent.
Our Final Thoughts
As far as crypto exchanges go, Kraken is a secure platform with good spreads and low fees. If you're an experienced trader who wants to use advanced features for margin and futures trading, then Kraken is worth checking out.
However, if you are just getting into the digital currency game, you may want to look for more user-friendly alternatives, like Coinbase.
Frequently Asked Questions
Kraken is one of the most secure cryptocurrency exchanges available. As a professional exchange, Kraken offers airtight security that meets the highest standards of legal compliance.
Kraken's team has decades of experience developing security technology trusted by millions of businesses around the world. Committed to making the crypto industry more secure, the company developed Kraken Security Labs.
These labs test third-party services and products to identify, publicize, and solve issues before they create network vulnerabilities that can be exploited by hackers.
You will be hard-pressed to find any Kraken review that doesn't point out that the platform may not be suitable for beginners.
As one of the few exchanges that offer margins, stop orders, and crypto short sales, Kraken is best suited for users who want to get into more advanced trading strategies.
If you're just starting out, Kraken may be more effort than it's worth compared to other platforms designed with new traders in mind.
The exchange is currently available in 190 countries, with a few exceptions due to international and local financial and cryptocurrency regulations.
At this time, Kraken does not offer service to residents of Afghanistan, Congo-Brazzaville, Congo-Kinshasa, Cuba, Iran, Iraq, Libya, North Korea, Syria, Tajikistan, Washington State, and New York.
There are additional holding and trading limitations for residents in Australia, Canada, Japan, and the United States. Kraken offers fiat currency funding with US Dollars (USD), Euros (EUR), and Canadian Dollars (CAD), all with minimal fees. Depositing funds with CAD and EUR SEPA is free.