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FTX vs Coinbase: Which Trading Platform Is Right for You?

FTX is better if you are an advanced trader.

by
Leo Brunnhofer
updated:
May 6, 2022

Today we compare the cryptocurrency platforms FTX and Coinbase.

Coinbase has less overwhelming features for beginners and newcomers, while FTX offers more advanced products, such as crypto futures and an NFT marketplace, and better fees.

Coinbase is a very well-established and one of the oldest and most respected crypto exchanges and the number two in daily trading volume. FTX is a "newcomer" with a young spirit and a diverse product palette.

In this article, we will look at how both exchanges perform in terms of security and trust, fees, products, availability of cryptocurrencies, customer support, deposit, and withdrawals.

Let's jump into the detailed review.

FTX

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Pro

+ Solid platform for experienced traders
+ Very Competitive fees
+ Huge selection of cryptocurrencies / futures
+ NFT platform
+ Debit Card (the US only)

Cons

- US platform is much more limited
- some major currencies not supported

Coinbase

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✔ Pros:

+ User-friendly and simple user interface
+ Diverse and consistently updated choice of coins
+ Advanced trading platform available
+ High liquidity and strong capitalization
+ Supports all major payment methods

✘ Cons:

- High per-transaction fees up to $2.99 per trade
- 0.50% spread built into most asset prices
- Not possible to buy NFTs or Derivatives

At a Glance

FTX Coinbase (Pro)
Fees 0.04%-0.4% maker/taker fees $0.99 to $2.99 + 0.5% spread
Cryptocurrencies (Pairs) 337 (509) 158 (444)
Native Token FTT no
Security high, Bank-level encryption, 2FA high, Bank-level encryption, 2FA
Verification Required yes yes
Other Assets only Crpytos only Cryptos
Mobile App OS/Android iOS/Android
Supported Transactions Buy, sell, trade and hold, stop Buy, sell, trade and hold, stop (on Pro)
Buy/deposit methods ACH Bank Transfer, Wire Transfer, PayPal, and Credit/Debit card
Debit Card, Bank Transfer, Crypto
Supported Fiat currencies USD, EUR, GBP, AUD, HKD, SGD, TRY, ZAR, CAD, CHF, BRL USD, GBP, EUR
Fiat trading no yes
Sell/withdraw methods Bank Transfer, Wire Transfer, PayPal, and Credit/Debit card Bank transfer, PayPal, crypto

What is FTX

FTX is a runner-up and one of the new wild exchanges founded in 2018. Initially, the headquarters were in Hong Kong; since 2021, they have been incorporated in the Bahamas with their headquarters in Antigua Barbuda due to regulatory worries.

Sam Bankman-Fried and Gary Wang founded FTX.

The FTX crypto platform closed an investment round of 900 million dollars from over 60 investors in July 2021. Some investors are Paul Tudor Jones, Coinbase Ventures, VanEck, and other VC firms like Paradigm and Sequoia Capital. The valuation for the round was 18 billion dollars. They also partnered with Tom Brady, Gisele Bündchen and Sharktank Shark Kevin O'Leary as official spokespeople.

FTX is best for:

Advanced, active traders

Trading with fiat currencies.

What is Coinbase?

Coinbase was founded in the United States in 2012.

Coinbase has around 73M users in over 100 different counties. Coinbase is a cryptocurrency exchange. You can buy and sell Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies with fiat US dollars, euros, etc., using a Coinbase Visa credit card or from your own bank account. Coinbase is one of the most popular destinations for buying and selling cryptocurrencies.

Brian Armstrong has been CEO of Coinbase since its founding in 2012 and President of the company.

Armstrong was on Forbes's "World's 100 Most Powerful People." and is on Forbes's "Billionaires under 30."

Coinbase parntnered with with Civic, Ripple, Bittrex.

Coinbase is best for:

  • Crypto traders are looking for convenience.
  • Traders who want to convert their digital assets to another easily.
01. March 2022 FTX Coinbase
Daily Trading Volume $2.6 billion $4.2 billion
Number of Crypto Assets 337 (510 pairs) 158 (444 pairs)
other products Future, Margin, Options trading with leverage. NFT Marketplace. Debit cards for US Users. Cryptos only. NFT Marketplace and Derivative Trading is announced for 2022
accepted in the USA only FTX.us yes

FTX vs Coinbase: Products & Features

FTX User interface

It's time to check out the different products and features of the two crypto exchanges.

FTX Review

FTX is definitely a crypto exchange with more products for advanced users.

You can trade futures, margin, options, and everything with leverage. Of course, that also means that the user interface is more complex because more features and products are available.

FTX NFT Marketplace

With its own NFT exchange, FTX has another feature available that Coinbase does not have. You can make your bit and purchase NFTs. You can make auctions or just hold them in your personal gallery. FXT is charging 5% percent to buyer and seller for each trade. The FTX NFT marketplace supports Ethereum and Solana-based NFTs.

Coinbase announced an NFT marketplace for 2022.

FTX native FTT Token

Coinbase does not have a native Token yet; FTX has it.

There is a total supply of 350.000.000 FTT tokens and 140.000.000 circulation at the moment. You get better crypto trading fees if you are staking your FTT Token.

Coinbase Tablet User Interface. Source: Coinbase.com

Coinbase Review

The basic version of Coinbase is all about making it easy and convenient to exchange cryptocurrencies; the Coinbase Pro Exchange is more for advanced traders.

Coinbase is more beginners, starting with spot trading, buying, selling, and holding cryptocurrencies.

Coinbase vs FTX - Debit cards

Both exchanges are offering debits cards for US users.

Coinbase vs FTX - Staking

FTX Staking

At FTX, you can stake the native Token FTT, which has quite some benefits. For example, it increases your referral rate, you get a discount on your maker fee, you do not have to pay blockchain fees or fiat fees when withdrawing your funds.

Besides FTT, you can also stake Serum (SRM), Solana (SOL), and RAY.

Unstacking takes 14 days.

Tier FTT Staked Referral Rate Maker Fee Rebate Bonus Votes Relative Airdrop Increase Free Daily ERC20/ETH Withdrawals
0 0 25.00% None 0 0.00% 0
1 25 28.00% 0.0000% 1 2.00% 1
2 150 30.00% 0.0005% 2 4.00% 3
3 1,000 32.00% 0.0010% 6 6.00% 10
4 10,000 34.00% 0.0015% 10 8.00% 30
5 50,000 36.00% 0.0020% 15 10.00% 100
6 250,000 38.00% 0.0025% 30 12.00% 300
7 1,000,000 40.00% 0.0030% 50 14.00% 1,000

FTT Staking rewards. Source: ftx.com

Coinbase Staking

You can stake a couple of different Coins on Coinbase.

At the moment, you can stake:

  • Ethereum (ETH) 4,5% APR
  • Algorand (ALGO) 4% APY
  • Cosmos (ATOM) 4% APY
  • Tezos (XTZ) 4,63% APY
  • DAI 2% APY
  • USD Coin (USDC) 0.15%

💡APR (Annual Percentage Rate) vs. APY (Annual Percentage Yield). The main difference between the terms is compounding. Compounding is the interest paid on interest. APR is simply the annual rate, while APY considers how often the interest is applied during the year.

Stocks

You can not trade stocks on Coinbase or Coinbase Pro.

On FTX, on the other hand, you can trade so-called tokenized stocks. Tokenized stocks are not the actual stocks but a product on the blockchain that mimics the stock.

FTX vs Coinbase: Deposit and Withdrawal

In the following table, you find the supported withdrawal and deposit methods.

FTX Coinbase
Deposit limits no deposit limits no limits, just fees
Withdraw Fiat N/A 1 %
Deposit and withdrawal via ACH Bank Transfer, Wire Transfer, PayPal, Credit/Debit Card
USA: ACH Bank account, Debit/Credit PayPal, Apple Pay, Google Pay

GBP: SEPA, 3D Secure Card, PayPal (withdraw only)

EUR: SEPA, 3D Secure Card, Ideal/Sofort (deposit only) PayPal (withdraw only) Apple Pay (buy only

Supported withdrawal and deposit methods

FTX vs Coinbase: Fees

Coinbase is very good to start with, but the fees are high. Coinbase Pro has a better fee structure but can not compete with FTX's Trading Fees. This may not be so relevant if you are a beginner and trade from time to time; for an advanced trader, fees are the enemy.

FTX has a tiered fee structure for spot and futures markets. The fee depends on your trading volume in the last 30 days. There is also a discount for FTT holders, which goes from a 3% discount if you hold FTT with a worth of $100 up to a 60% discount if you are holding FTT worth $5.000.000 or more.

Let's have a detailed look at the fees.

FTX Coinbase
Fund with Bank Account no fees 1.49%
Fund with Debit/Credit Card Card Fees 3.99%
Convert & Buy no fees Up to 2% spread
Withdraw via crypto Network Fee Network Fee
Withdraw via bank transfer first 5000 USD for free, further discounts if you hold FTT Network Fee
Trading variable spread
0.0 % to 0.020% for Makers

0.04% to 0.070% for Takers
Trades up to 0.5%
fixed fee $0.99 - $2.99

FTX vs Coinbase: Transaction Fees, Trading commissions comparison

FTX is the clear winner here since they offer much lower fees.

If you sign up for FTX with our link, you get a 5% lifetime free reduction.

FTX vs Coinbase: Supported cryptocurrencies

Today, FTX is offering 337 Coins, 180 Perpetuals, 20 Futures, and 510 trading pairs.

Coinbase offers 158 Coins and 444 Trading pairs.

💡 Perpetual contracts are derivative contracts similar to futures with no expiration date or settlement.

FTX wins since they have a more significant offer, especially in perpetual and futures trading.

FTX vs Coinbase: Security and Trust

Both have excellent security measures.

FTX Security

FTX has a 24-hour withdrawal lock after the password is changed or the Two-Factor-Authentication (2FA) is removed. You can also whitelist wallet addresses and IP addresses. If there is any suspicious activity, you get an email notification.

Additionally, you can set up your own withdrawal password and also set up a subaccount with limited functions.

FTX has also partnered with Chainanalysis to monitor suspicious transaction activity. The FTX team reviews any suspicious or large deposits and withdrawals manually.

Coinbase Security

Coinbase is the second-largest exchange after Binance.

At Coinbase (Pro), you can also whitelist addresses and use 2-step verification to secure your account.

Coinbase is also checking the background of each employee during the hiring process. Each device is protected with different passwords and 2FA. All hard drives in the company are encrypted, employees have to use strong passwords, and screen locks have to be enabled.

The Coinbase Vault is a more secure crypto storage option. It offers time-delayed withdrawals that can be canceled within 48 hours.

Coinbase got its trading license from the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) and is audited by Deloitte.

99% of all cryptocurrency funds at Coinbase are stored in cold storage.

FTX vs Coinbase: Insurance

FTX Exchange is holding an insurance fund if the exchange gets hacked, security exploits or other events occur.

Coinbase is insured up to $250k per account for American Users. These funds are insured by Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC). This is valid for the personal Coinbase and the Coinbase Pro account.

The non-U.S customers' funds are held in separate and dedicated custodial accounts. Those funds are not used for any corporate purposes.

FTX vs Coinbase: Hacks and Security Breaches

There were rumors that FTX was hacked in 2019, but they were never confirmed and seemed to be fake. FTX was never hacked.

Coinbase, on the other hand, was hacked in 2021. Six thousand accounts were affected. The attackers likely used a phishing email to access the user's email inboxes and exploited a flaw in the Coinbases two-factor SMS system to access user accounts. The affected users were reimbursed.

Both exchanges are considered secure.

FTX vs Coinbase: Signup and User-friendliness

Both exchanges require to get through the KYC process.

Coinbase is a bit more user-friendly, just because they have fewer features. The regular Coinbase version is quite minimalistic and suitable for beginners.

The trading view of Coinbase Pro and FTX is quite similar to any other exchange or brokerage account.

FTX vs Coinbase: Customer Service

Customer support can make a difference if you are experiencing severe issues. That's why we have a look closer look here.

FTX Customer Support

FTX is offering customer support via support ticket. They also have an all-in-one help section, which is nothing exceptional nowadays. If you can not solve the issue yourself, you can submit a ticket. The support email address is support@ftx.com. There is no live chat available.

Note that neither Coinbase nor FTX supports will ever ask you for personal information.

Coinbase Customer Support

Users having issues are also supposed to start at the Coinbase Helpcenter to eliminate their issues. If you cannot solve your problem, you can write them a message here. The support can be pretty slow with their replies. That's also because Coinbase is just so big.

Coinbase also does not offer a Live Chat.

Both customer supports are not great, but also not terrible.

FTX vs Coinbase: Verdict

Both exchanges are great and popular for different use cases. FTX has an edge if you are an advanced, serious trader just because you have more options for trading. Low Fees are essential if you are trading cryptos also there FTX is ahead.

Coinbase and Coinbase Pro are good starting points and less overwhelming if you are just starting out. The usability is great, and you can still move on to a different exchange if fees are getting more important since you are diving deeper into the trading world.

If you want to trade derivatives or NFTs, Coinbase does not have that option yet. Both products are announced and are supposed to arrive in 2022.

Depending on your needs, you can signup for your favorite here.

I hope you liked our insights, have fun and stay weird.

Resources

FTX Status

FTT Transparency Page

Disclaimer

This website includes information about cryptocurrencies and other financial instruments. All these areas are complex instruments and come with a high risk of losing money. We are NOT giving financial or investment advice; this page is for educational and informational purposes only. Please be careful and make sure that you understand how these instruments work. Also, think about whether you can afford to take the risk of losing your money.

Weirdo.Rocks encourage you to do your own research before making any investment decision.

Pro

+ Solid platform for experienced traders
+ Very Competitive fees
+ Huge selection of cryptocurrencies / futures
+ NFT platform
+ Debit Card (the US only)

Visit Site
Check it out!
Best for US Customers.

✔ Pros:

+ User-friendly and simple user interface
+ Diverse and consistently updated choice of coins
+ Advanced trading platform available
+ High liquidity and strong capitalization
+ Supports all major payment methods

Visit Site
Check it out!
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