Kraken Exchange Review
Kraken Cryptocurrency Review
Trust Score 9/10
Kraken is widely regarded to be one of the best and largest cryptocurrency exchanges in the sector and is currently ranked number five in the world. Furthermore, when it comes down to euro volume it is actually considered the largest.
Kraken first launched back in July of 2011 and while they initially focused on Euro markets and European users, having since acquired both Coinsetter and CaVirtex, two North American exchanges, that focus has changed into a more global one.
Owned and operated by Payward, Inc, Kraken has always been one of the most trusted bitcoin exchanges and to this day is seen as one of the best places for traders to go. While it is not considered paericularly beginner-friendly, more experienced traders are the type that you will usually find playing the Kraken markets.
If you are interested in finding out more about Kraken and the cryptocurrency services that they can provide for you, carry on reading this review and we will fill you right in.
Kraken has never ventured down the path of developing a mobile app for users to take advantage of and we find that a little disappointing. They are far from being the only exchange that has failed to do this but we really feel that many of them are missing out on a trick here.
Their website is mobile-friendly however, so traders that do like to use mobile-devices when out and about to keep an eye on their investments are not completely out of luck. It would still be nice to have a more efficiencient dedicated app to use though.
Over the years, Kraken has grown the number of fiat currencies and cryptocurrencies that it exchanges for traders and as of 2018, the following are the cryptocurrencies that you can buy, sell and trade at Kraken.
Additionally, the EUR, USD, JPY, GBP and CAD are the fiat currencies that Kraken accepts and exchanges for its users.
Registering at Kraken
Registering an account with Kraken is a fairly straightforward process that initially requires you provide an email address, a username and a password.
As you are signing up, you can take a look at the advanced settings tabs to see and take advantage of some extra security features for your account. These security features include two-factor authentication, a master key, PGP public key and PGP encryption for emails.
Once you have selected the advanced settings you want to use and are happy with your username and password, you are ready to click ‘sign up’.
You will be sent the obligatory verification email that will allow you to verify your email address and once you have done so, your account has been created.
Verification at Kraken
Now that you have an account, you are going to need to get your identity verified if you ever want to get money or any cryptocurrencies into your Kraken account. There are four levels of verification on Kraken, with each level giving you more ability.
- Tier 0 – This is the tier you find yourself after you have created an account on Kraken. Unfortunately, at this tier, you cannot do anything of note.
- Tier 1 – By providing and verifying your full name, date of birth, country of residence and phone number with Kraken, you will be able to deposit, trade and withdraw digital currencies only. You will have no limits on how much of these currencies you can deposit but will have a $2,500.00 maximum withdrawal limit on a daily basis or $20,000.00 across thirty
- Tier 2 – If you can verify your address with the Kraken support staff, you will now be able to deposit and withdraw fiat currencies as well as cryptocurrencies. $2,000 or $10,000 will be your deposit limits for fiat currencies on a daily or monthly basis respectively. Furthermore, at this level, your daily and monthly withdrawal limits for cryptocurrencies will increase to $5k and $50k respectively.
- Tier 3 – Being tier 3 verified will just increase your limits across the board. You will need to provide some government-issued identification and proof of residence. Deposit and withdrawal limits for fiat currencies will now be weekly and monthly limits of $25k and $200k. Withdrawal limits for cryptocurrencies will also increase to $50k and $200k.
- Tier 4 – Tier 4 verification is the highest and it will allow users to deposit and withdraw up to $100k per day in any fiat or cryptocurrency and up to $500k per month in any currency.
Once you are at a tier that suits your needs, you can then start to enjoy the services and features that Kraken provides.
If you are just looking to order cryptocurrencies from Kraken, the basic interface will probably be more than enough for you. However, if you are looking to do a little more advanced trading, you are going to want to check out the trading tools that they provide.
With so many trading pairs due to the many fiat and cryptocurrencies, there really is so much that you can do. Below are just some of the other features that traders can use:
- Simple Markets
- Limit Orders
- Marging Trading
- Short Selling
Accepted Payment Methods
Kraken accepts four fiat currencies for both deposits and withdrawals and also fifteen different cryptocurrencies can be transferred in and out of the Kraken wallet.
EUR, USD, JPY and CAD are the four fiat currencies that Kraken allows you to deposit and the methods of depositing them will be bank transfers and wires. Most of these deposits will take between one and five business days to complete with CAD wire transfers taking the longest on average with wait times of between 5 and 12 business days.
As for depositing the many cryptocurrencies on Kraken, these are much quicker and will either be instant or take up to an hour maximum for some of the currencies.
Withdrawals can be done utilizing the same methods as you will see in deposits above and the processing times for each of them are very similar as well. Bank transfers and wires are likely to take some time but if you are moving cryptocurrencies out of your wallet, these transactions should be very fast indeed.
Compared to many of their competitors, the fees at Kraken are actually very low. They are quite confusing though, so you really need to make sure you understanding what you are reading over at their site. We have provided a couple of links below to their website and the particular page you will need when it comes to fees at the exchange.
With so many currencies, you can imagine that understanding each of them and what they mean for your own currency can be quite overwhelming.
As mentioned previously, Kraken allows the trading of 15 different cryptocurrencies and in the main, depositing them is free. Among the exceptions are Ether and Ether Classic which require a small transaction fee to move them into the wallet at Kraken. The other exceptions are Melonport, Augur, Iconomi, Gnosis and EOS which will require very small setup fees.
Depositing fiat currencies is free using EUR SEPA deposit JPY domestic deposit of CAD wire deposit but there are fees and minimum deposit amounts for the rest of the fiat currencies. These can be found by going here as well as more information about the fees involved with depositing cryptocurrencies.
All withdrawals from Kraken will involve some kind of fee with the being a great variation in the amounts. Withdrawing via EUR SEPA, for example, will have a fee attached to just €0.09 per transaction while withdrawing via EUR Swift will have fees of €60.00 attached.
For a clearer explanation of what these fees are, we suggest you check out their site to establish what you will be looking at to withdraw your currencies from the Kraken wallet.
- Trading Fees
As you would expect with most cryptocurrency exchanges, there are trading fees that will come into play. At Kraken, they are actually pretty low and will go lower the more trading volume that a user will undertake.
Fees start at 0.16% for makers and 0.26% for takers but these fees can fall as low as 0.00% and 0.10% respectively should users meet specific volume trading numbers.
There are no max limits at Kraken when purchasing any currencies but there will always be minimum amounts required for each purchase. Below is the minimum purchase amount required for each of the cryptocurrencies:
- REP – 0.3
- XBT – 0.002
- BCH – 0.002
- DASH – 0.03
- DOGE – 3000
- EOS – 3
- ETH – 0.02
- ETC – 0.3
- GNO – 0.03
- ICN – 2
- LTC – 0.1
- MLN – 0.1
- XMR – 0.1
- XRP – 30
- XLM – 300
- ZEC – 0.03
- USDT – 5
The above is always likely to change the value of currencies increase and decrease, so make sure you stay well up to date with all of the minimum purchase limits.
Kraken accepts users primarily with bank accounts in Europe, Great Britain, Canada, Japan and the United States. Any user that is unable to verify their accounts as being from those countries will find it difficult to do anything on the site at all as deposits and withdrawals are completely blocked until a minimum amount of verification has been provided.
It seems that the number one complaint from users of many Bitcoin exchanges is that the customer supports is not always as good as it should be. This seems to be a complaint about Kraken as well, with many users complaining of emails taking a few days before being answered.
We have not found anything too serious among the complaints but we do hope that they make improvements in this area.
They do offer 24/7 support via both email and LIVE chat but the quality does need to improve. They also have an informative frequently asked questions section on their site that might help users with smaller issues they need to be resolved.
- 24/7 Email and Live Chat Support
- A.Q Section
Safety and security has always been something at the top of the list from Kraken and they certainly do their very best to keep any potential attacks at bay.
Kraken was one of the first exchanges to agree to an audit that showed that they were holding a reserve that covered 100% of their customers funds as they should be. Furthermore, they adopt high-tech security policies, processes and technology to ensure that their servers are protected at all times.
As for player accounts, they offer players the ability to use two-factor authentication, master keys, PGP public keys and PGP encryption for emails.
Not only has Kraken cemented themselves among the top bitcoin exchanges in the world, they were also one of the very first to pass an independent audit with flying colours. They have shown over the years that they are an exchange that can be trusted, offer up a good selection of trading options and have some of the lowest fees around.
They score particularly well due to the security features that they have implemented on both their side and the side of their customers. Customer service is not as good as it should be but if Kraken value their customers – we are sure they will start working on this aspect of their exchange. Check out Kraken today if you have been looking for an hinest and dedicated bitcoin exchange.