Cryptocurrency exchanges or digital currency exchanges (DCE) are businesses that allow customers to trade cryptocurrencies or digital currencies for other assets, such as conventional fiat money, or different digital currencies. They can be market makers that typically take the bid/ask spreads as transaction commissions for their services or simply charge fees as a matching platform.DCEs may be brick-and-mortar businesses, exchanging traditional payment methods and digital currencies, or strictly online businesses, exchanging electronically transferred money and digital currencies. Most digital currency exchanges operate outside of Western countries, avoiding regulatory oversight and complicating prosecutions, but DCEs often handle Western fiat currencies, sometimes maintaining bank accounts in several countries to facilitate deposits in various national currencies. They may accept credit card payments, wire transfers, postal money orders, cryptocurrency or other forms of payment in exchange for digital currencies. They can send cryptocurrency to your personal cryptocurrency wallet. Many can convert digital currency balances into anonymous prepaid cards which can be used to withdraw funds from ATMs worldwide.Some digital currencies are backed by real-world commodities such as gold.Creators of digital currencies are often independent of the DCEs that trade the currency. In one type of system, digital currency providers (DCP), are businesses that keep and administer accounts for their customers, but generally do not issue digital currency to those customers directly. Customers buy or sell digital currency from DCEs, who transfer the digital currency into or out of the customer's DCP account. Some DCEs are subsidiaries of DCP, but many are legally independent businesses. The denomination of funds kept in DCP accounts may be of a real or fictitious currency.
In 2004 three Australian–based digital currency exchange businesses voluntarily shut down following an investigation by the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC). The ASIC viewed the services offered as legally requiring an Australian Financial Services License, which the companies lacked.In 2006, US-based digital currency exchange business GoldAge Inc., a New York state business, was shut down by the US Secret Service after operating since 2002. Business operators Arthur Budovsky and Vladimir Kats were indicted "on charges of operating an illegal digital currency exchange and money transmittal business" from their apartments, transmitting more than $30 million to digital currency accounts. Customers provided limited identity documentation, and could transfer funds to anyone worldwide, with fees sometimes exceeding $100,000. Budovsky and Kats were sentenced in 2007 to five years in prison "for engaging in the business of transmitting money without a license, a felony violation of state banking law", ultimately receiving sentences of five years probation.In April 2007, the US government ordered E-gold administration to lock/block approximately 58 E-Gold accounts owned and used by The Bullion Exchange, AnyGoldNow, IceGold, GitGold, The Denver Gold Exchange, GoldPouch Express, 1MDC (a Digital Gold Currency, based on e-gold) and others, forcing G&SR (owner of OmniPay) to liquidate the seized assets. A few weeks later, E-Gold faced four indictments. Here is the DoJ release and here is the rebuttal by Douglas Jackson, CEO.In July 2008, Webmoney changed its rules, affecting many exchanges. Since that time it became prohibited[by whom?] to exchange Webmoney to the most popular e-currencies like E-gold, Liberty Reserve and others.Also in July 2008 E-gold's three directors accepted a bargain with the prosecutors and plead guilty to one count of "conspiracy to engage in money laundering" and one count of the "operation of an unlicensed money transmitting business". E-gold ceased operations in 2009.In 2013, Jean-Loup Richet, a research fellow at ESSEC ISIS, surveyed new money laundering techniques that cybercriminals were using in a report written for the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime. A common approach to cyber money laundering was to use a digital currency exchanger service which converted dollars into Liberty Reserve and could be sent and received anonymously. The receiver could convert the Liberty Reserve currency back into cash for a small fee. In May 2013, digital currency exchanger Liberty Reserve was shut down after the alleged founder, Arthur Budovsky Belanchuk, and four others were arrested in Costa Rica, Spain, and New York "under charges for conspiracy to commit money laundering and conspiracy and operation of an unlicensed money transmitting business." Budovsky, a former U.S. citizen and naturalized Costa Rican, was convicted in connection with the 2006 Gold Age raid. A U.S. indictment said the case "is believed to be the largest international money laundering prosecution in history."More than $40 million in assets were placed under restraint pending forfeiture, and more than 30 Liberty Reserve exchanger domain names were seized. The company was estimated to have laundered $6 billion in criminal proceeds.Following the launch of a decentralized cryptocurrency bitcoin in 2008 and the subsequent introduction of other cryptocurrencies, many virtual platforms were created specifically for the exchange of decentralized cryptocurrencies. Their regulation differs from country to country.The US Securities and Exchange Commission maintains that "if a platform offers trading of digital assets that are securities and operates as an "exchange," as defined by the federal securities laws, then the platform must register with the SEC as a national securities exchange or be exempt from registration".In Japan to operate a cryptocurrency exchange a special license must be obtained from the Financial Services Authority of Japan specifically for the operation of a virtual currency exchange. In the Republic of Belarus cryptocurrency exchanges may be licensed under the Presidential Decree No 8 of 22 December 2017 "On the Development of Digital Economy". In the Kyrgyz Republic cryptocurrencies are considered commodities and may be freely traded at any regulated commodities exchange. Several cryptocurrency exchanges operating in the European Union obtained licenses under the EU Payment Services Directive and the EU Electronic Money Directive. The adequacy of such licenses for the operation of a cryptocurrency exchange has not been judicially tested. The European Council and the European Parliament announced that they will issue regulations to impose stricter rules targeting exchange platforms.
List of some notable digital currency exchanges
Main article: List of bitcoin companiesTitleCountryFiat moneyBitcoinAltcoinsCommodityTrade FeeDecentralizedANX Hong KongYesYesYesNo0.3%-0.6%NoBtc.sx UKNoYesNoNo0.5%NoBittrex USANoYesYesNo0.25%NoBitfinex Hong KongYesYesYesNo0.0%-0.2%NoBTCChina ChinaYesYesYesNo0%NoBuyUcoin IndiaYesYesYesNo0.42%-0.84%NoCEX.IO UKYesYesYesYes0.2% - 7%NoCoinbase USAYesYesYesNo1%NoCoincheck JapanYesYesYesNo-0.05% - 0.15%NoCoinfloor UKYesYesNoNo0.08 - 0.55%NoGDAX USAYesYesYesNo0.1% to 0.25%NoGemini USAYesYesNoNo-0.15% (rebate) to 0.25%NoHitBTC UKNoYesYesNo-0.01% to 0.10%NoKraken USAYesYesYesNo0.05 - 0.50%NoLocalBitcoins FinlandYesYesNoNo1%YesLuno South AfricaYesYesNoNo0% - 1%NoPoloniex USANoYesYesNo0.10%-0.25%No
Over the counter trading (OTC)
Over-the-counter or off-the-exchange trading of bitcoins is a more flexible and convenient way of trading bitcoins comparing to traditional exchanges.OTC trading has kept growing since 2014 in various financial markets as more institutions taking the trades off the exchange. Today, many corporations or institutions employ individual traders or bitcoin-OTC trading desks to perform this task at moderate expenses. Some representatives bitcoin-OTC trading desks could be Bitfinex.com, itBit, Coinfloor, Octagon Strategy Limited, LocalBitcoins, Bitstamp, BitX etc.
Preserve Market Stability
List of some notable bitcoin OTC desks
TitleCountryFiat moneyBitcoinAltcoinsTrade feeSettlementMin. Limit (no. of btc)Bitfinex Hong KongYesYesYes0.1 - 0.2%NANAitBit SingaporeYesYesNo0.1% per transactionT+0100Coinfloor UKYesYesNo0.1 - 0.38%T+0NAOctagon Strategy Hong KongYesYesYes0.1-0.5%T+0NALocalBitcoinsWorldwideYesYesNo0.0001 - 0.0010 BTC per outgoing transferNANABitX SingaporeYesYesNo0.1%NA250
- Digital currency
- Digital gold currency
- Bureau de Change
- Gold as an investment
- List of Bitcoin companies
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- Jump up^ "Services Fees and Limitations". Retrieved 30 April 2017.
- Jump up^ "Our Fees". Retrieved 30 April 2017.
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- Jump up^ Limited, Unocoin Technologies Private. "Unocoin | Launching OTC Platform for high volume traders". www.unocoin.com. Retrieved 2017-01-04.
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- Jump up^ "Bitcoin OTC Trading | itBit". www.itbit.com. Retrieved 2017-01-04.
- Jump up^ "OVER-THE-COUNTER MARKET". www.coinfloor.co.uk. Retrieved 2017-01-04.
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- Jump up^ "Octagon Strategy Ltd commences Ethereum trading (ETH)". Retrieved 2017-03-31.
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