If you have plans to enter the cryptocurrency market, Kraken and Coinbase are the most trustworthy and popular crypto exchange platforms in the world. A user can buy various currencies, including US dollar and Euro, using fiat money through both these platforms. Both the platforms have very simple procedures and an ordinary person can operate them without much difficulty. While Kraken offers low fee services and high trading limits, a lot of new investors from the US are of the view that the digital wallet and funding options of Coinbase are convenient for them. Unlike Kraken, Coinbase caters to US-based traders. Both the platforms have good mobile apps and provide 24/7 customer service. Kraken can be more suitable for lower-volume traders and worldwide investors because the platform offers flat purchasing fees. Coinbase, on the other hand, could be more useful for US traders because the platform gives users the option to use PayPal and debit cards.
Kraken provides trading in around 176 countries as compared to the list of Coinbase’s more than 100 countries.
However, both platforms are not available in some locations. Coinbase is not available to Hawaii residents, while Kraken is not offering its services in New York and Washington. Both of them offer live chat through their platforms for providing support to customers besides offering question-and-answer centers and center guides.
Both of them also offer margin trading with Kraken providing up to five-times leverage. The apps are also good, providing adequate features to customers. However, Kraken’s app is not available in five countries and one territory.
One good feature of Kraken is its Cryptowatch. It is a free service trading terminal that analyzes and generates data on more than 2,000 cryptocurrency markets. It helps traders to monitor price movements and market trends across various platforms so that they can set price alerts.
Meanwhile, Coinbase offers a hot wallet for its users. Traders can use the wallet to deposit, store and withdraw currency. Kraken also has such a facility known as a digital wallet but it does not provide a personal wallet service.
Kraken and Coinbase have advanced accounts such as Kraken Pro and Coinbase Pro with reasonable fees.
Kraken’s instant pay service for crypto beginners can be used for those who want to try it for the first time. You have to pay a standard 1.5% Kraken trading fee and an additional 0.5% transfer fee if you buy $200 worth of Bitcoin by automatic bank transfer. At the same time, if you want to buy $200 worth of the stablecoin Tether, you will have to pay a 0.9% Kraken fee and the 0.5% transfer fee.
One big disadvantage for Kraken in the US is that the platform does not have payment options with credit or debit card. On the other hand, you can use credit, debit cards, PayPal and Apple Pay for transactions in Coinbase. Coinbase charges around 0.5% plus a transaction fee. The transaction fee could be either a flat fee or a percentage based on the payment method. If you are looking to buy $200 worth of Bitcoin using a bank transfer, you will have to pay a bank transfer fee of 1.49% or a flat fee of $2.99. In short, you will have to pay a flat fee of $2.99 and the spread of around 0.5%. The calculation of spread is a bit complicated for users.
Both of them support USD, EUR, CAD, AUD, GBP, CHF, and JPY fiat currencies. Coinbase has more than 120 cryptocurrencies available for trade, while Kraken has 93. Apart from Bitcoin, the most popular cryptocurrencies supported by both of them include Cardano (ADA), Bitcoin Cash (BCH), Chainlink (LINK), Ethereum (ETH) and Litecoin (LTC).
The security features have also been good for both of them. They have solid security track records and neither has had any significant breaches so far. Kraken keeps 95% of assets offline in cold storage, while for Coinbase the figure is 98%. Both of them participate in bug bounty programs that reward ethical hackers for finding flaws in the system.
We find both platforms trusted sources for trading and users can rely on their security features to ensure that their money is in safe hands. While Kraken has slightly advantage when considering the fee structure, Coinbase is more popular for its user-friendly interface. New crypto investors found Coinbase interface more useful.