What is Coinbase?
Coinbase is the second biggest crypto trading platform in the world. Surpassed only by Binance. It is an American exchange, and as such, US-investors are naturally permitted.
Coinbase is regulated in the United States by the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN). Its shares are also listed on Nasdaq New York since 14 April 2021.
The platform first opened up its doors in 2012. On its 10-year anniversary (equal to like 300 years in the cryptocurrency world) in June 2022, Coinbase published this video on its official YouTube-channel. We LOVE it.
108 Million Users
On the date of last updating this review (25 January 2023), Coinbase had over 108 million verified users according to information from their website. Amazing.
Coinbase and Coinbase Pro
The exchange conducts its business under two different brands, Coinbase being one, and Coinbase Pro being the other. Coinbase is more focused on retail consumers that want to buy Bitcoin with fiat currencies, whereas Coinbase Pro is a more advanced cryptocurrency trading platform.
There are 230+ cryptcurrencies available at this exchange. There used to be many more are available at Coinbase Pro, but now they offer trading in roughly the same list of cryptos, although there are more advanced trading formats available at the latter platform.
Coinbase Trading View
Different exchanges have different trading views. And there is no “this overview is the best”-view. You should yourself determine which trading view that suits you the best. What the views normally have in common is that they all show the order book or at least part of the order book, a price chart of the chosen cryptocurrency and order history. The “trading view” here is much simpler and more intuitive than at a normal centralized exchange. The below is a picture of what's called "Advanced Trading" on the Coinbase-platform (trading view obtained on 25 January 2023):
Most crypto traders feel that desktop give the best conditions for their trading. The computer has a bigger screen, and on bigger screens, more of the crucial information that most traders base their trading decisions on can be viewed at the same time. The trading chart will also be easier to display. However, not all crypto investors require desktops for their trading. Some prefer to do their crypto trading via their mobile phone.
If you are one of the traders to prefer to use your mobile for everything, you’ll be happy to learn that Coinbase also has mobile applications for all major smart phones.
Coinbase Trading fees
This exchange has a quite complex method of charging fees. It sort of feels as if it is intentionally complex. This is how they describe their trading fee model when it comes to crypto-to-crypto trades:
"Coinbase charges a spread margin of up to two percent (2.00%) for Digital Currency Conversions. The actual spread margin charged varies due to market fluctuations in the price of Digital Currencies on Coinbase Pro between the time we quote a price and the time when the order executes. We do not charge a separate Coinbase Fee for Digital Currency Conversions."
When buying or selling crypto (i.e. fiat to crypto or crypto to fiat), Coinbase charges the higher of its flat fee, and the percentage fee (normally 1.49%). The different flat fees are as follows and are only relevant for minor trades:
Coinbase Withdrawal fees
To our understanding, Coinbase does not charge any fees of their own when you withdraw crypto from your account at the platform. Accordingly, the only fee you have to think about when withdrawing are the network fees. The network fees are fees paid to the miners of the relevant crypto/blockchain, and not fees paid to the exchange itself. Network fees vary from day to day depending on the network pressure.
In general though, only paying the network fees should be considered as below global industry average when it comes to fee levels for crypto withdrawals.
At Coinbase, you can deposit through both wire transfer and credit cards. This can be helpful especially for newer crypto investors.
One should generally look out for the different deposit fees charged by exchanges for deposit of fiat currencies via wire transfer or credit cards, and whereas it might be indifferent to you whether you should deposit via wire transfer or credit card, it might be very different fees. When depositing funds through credit card to this exchange, you will most likely incur deposit fees amounting to 4%. This is a lot of money. When funding your account through wire transfer, the deposit fee is 1.5% which is also very high relative to the market competitors’ fees.
Are Coinbase's fees high?
Yes, Coinbase's fees are very high. At Coinbase, they charge the higher of its spread margin (being 2.00%) and it's "percentage fee", being 1.49%. A typical spot trading fee range is more like 0.10-0.20%, so Coinbase is between 10x to 20x higher than industry average here...
What is the minimum deposit on Coinbase?
The minimum deposit at Coinbase is 1 USD.
How long is the withdrawal time at Coinbase?
We have not been able to find any recent information on crypto withdrawal times at Coinbase, only fiat currency withdrawals. Fiat currency withdrawals take on average 1-2 business days according to Coinbase.
Has Coinbase ever been hacked?
Coinbase was hacked in September 2021. The hack exploited Coinbase's account recovery system and got access to around 6,000 different user accounts. It has however been reported that all user assets affected by the hacking was reimbursed by Coinbase.
Is Coinbase secure?
While Coinbase has been hacked in the past, we still think that it is correct to say that Coinbase today, from a user perspective, is secure, in particular considering that all users affected by hacks have been reimbursed in full.
Where is Coinbase based?
Coinbase is based in San Francisco, California, USA.
Which countries are restricted from using Coinbase?
Coinbase does not allow users from any country subject to international sanctions, whether under OFAC-sanctions or EU-sanctions. Accordingly, to our understanding, users from any of the following countries are blocked from creating an account with Coinbase: Afghanistan, Central African Republic, China, Congo, Cuba, Guinea, Haiti, Iran, Iraq, Libya, Myanmar, Nicaragua, North Korea, Russia, Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan, Syria, Tunisia, Turkey, Venezuela, Yemen and Zimbabwe. Apparently, Singapore is also restricted, albeit not under sanctions.