BTC
18926
DOGE
0.0628
ETH
1317.4
LTC
53.67
EN
RU

Kraken was founded by Jesse Powell in 2011 in San Francisco. Kraken launched officially in 2013 after testing and development. Since that time, the exchange has been one of the most demanded platforms for trading digital assets. Around 2.5 million investors visit Kraken daily.

In 2014, the exchange was included in the Bloomberg Terminal along with Coinbase. Kraken is accredited in the U.S., Canada, UK, Australia and Japan. As of 2022, the exchange is available to residents of 180 countries. Transactions with 116 coins and 500 trading pairs are executed on the platform.

Kraken benefits include quick and responsible customer support and a knowledge database for beginners. The drawback of the exchange is mandatory verification for trading.

Kraken rating

The exchange is among the Top 5 largest platforms in terms of daily trading volume and traffic.

Total score 8.5
Commissions 9
Security and regulation 9
Markets 8
Passive income 8
Deposit and withdrawal 9
Trading platforms 10
Analytics 7
Education 8
Customer support 10
Bonuses 8

Kraken Pros and Cons

Kraken has some strong advantages, but also clear disadvantages. This is typical of all cryptocurrency exchanges, because their assessment is always subjective. What one investor considers inconvenient for trading, another investor will call perfect conditions.

Pros
Quick work of customer support. The response to any question in the live chat comes within a couple of minutes. A customer support agent can be contacted by phone.
Low average fees. With high trading volumes, it is possible to achieve zero fees.
Quick procedure for crediting cryptocurrency to your account.
OTC trading for all currencies.
High level of security is ensured by holding user assets in cold wallets.
Cons
Mandatory verification
No demo account

Basic information

The exchange was established in 2011. Over a decade of operation, it has gained a wide user base. Daily trading volumes at Kraken reach $850 million. More details about the cryptocurrency exchange are available in the table below.

Name Kraken
Website www.kraken.com
Exchange type Centralized
Regulation FinCEN
Taker’s fee from 0.12 to 0.26 %
Maker’s fee from 0.02% to 0.16%
Demo account No
Minimum deposit Depends on account type
BTC withdrawal limits Per day – from $5,000 to $10,000,000 (depending on the verification level).
Per month – no limits.
Time frame for account opening from 10 minutes (for account registration) to 5 days (for verification)
Leverage Up to 1:5
Markets 424
Passive income options On-chain staking / off-chain staking
Withdrawal fee Transfer fee: 0.9% / for any stablecoins and currency pairs / 1.5 % / for other cryptocurrencies / 3.75 % / + €0.25 for debit/credit cards / 1.7 % / + $0.10 for online banking
Deposit methods Sepa,
bank transfer,
cryptocurrencies,
debit/credit card (Visa/MC)
Withdrawal methods Sepa,
bank transfer,
cryptocurrencies,
debit/credit card (Visa/MC)
Account currencies List of currencies (for example BTC, ETH, USD, EUR)
Author of the review
Anastasia Hernandez
Anastasia Hernandez

Anastasia Hernandez is a financial consultant and analyst with over ten years of experience. She has been an active trader in the cryptocurrency market since 2018. Hernandez specializes in detailed analysis of digital currencies and development of trading strategies and investment portfolios.

Kraken commissions and fees

9

The fees depend on the 30-day trading volume of an investor. The fee for purchasing stablecoins (USDT, USDC or DAI) with USD or purchasing them with another stablecoin is 0.9%. There is a 1.5% fee for purchasing stablecoins with another cryptocurrency, for example BTC. The higher the 30-day trading volume the lower are the fees. Here are some other specifics of paying fees on Kraken:

  • The fees are charged for each separate transaction.
  • The fee amount depends exclusively on the 30-day trading volume.
  • Clients get discounts upon achieving a certain trading volume.
Pros
The fees are almost the same for almost all cryptocurrency pairs, which stimulates liquidity at the exchange.
A deliberate system of charging fees that incentivizes investors with high 30-day trading volumes.
Deposits in cryptocurrency are not charged with a fee.
Cons
A fee is charged on deposits in fiat.

Trading fees

Kraken uses maker-taker fees with a system of incentivizing high trading volumes. The fees are charged based on the 30-day trading volume of a trader.

30-day volume Maker’s fee Taker’s fee
$0 — $50'000 0.16% 0.26%
$50'001 — $100'000 0.14% 0.24%
$100'001 — $250'000 0.12% 0.22%
$250'001 — $500'000 0.10% 0.20%
$500'001 — $1'000'000 0.08% 0.18%
$1'000'000 —$2'500'000 0.06% 0.16%
$2'500'001 — $5'000'000 0.04% 0.14%
$5'000'001 — $10'000'000 0.02% 0.12%

For trading FX pairs (EUR and USD), where stablecoin acts as the base currency (USDT/USD, DAI/USDT), the following fee schedule is applied:

30-Day Volume (USD) Maker’s fee Taker’s fee
$0 — $50'000 0.20% 0.20%
$50'001 — $100'000 0.16% 0.16%
$100'001 $ — $250'000 0.12% 0.12%
$250'001 — $500'000 0.08% 0.08%
$500'001 — $1'000'000 0.04% 0.04%
$1'000'000+ 0.00% 0.00%

Futures trading is provided by Kraken Futures fee schedule, offering incentives for high trading volumes similar to FX pairs, spot with stablecoins.

30-Day Volume Maker’s fee Taker’s fee
0 – $100'000 0.0200% 0.0500%
$100'000 – $1'000'000 0.0150% 0.0400%
$1'000'000 – $5'000'000 0.0125% 0.0300%
$5'000'000 – $10'000'000 0.0100% 0.0250%
$10'000'000 – $20'000'000 0.0075% 0.0200%
$20'000'000 – $50'000'000 0.0050% 0.0150%
$50'000'000 – $100'000'000 0.0025% 0.0125%
$100'000'000+ 0.0000% 0.0100%
Non-trading fees

The exchange does not charge a fee on deposits in cryptocurrency. The situation, however, is reverse for fiat money. In this case, the fee depends on the deposit/withdrawal method:

Withdrawal Withdrawal minimum Fee Processing time
SWIFT (Bank Frick) 4 USD 3 USD Up to 5 business days
SWIFT (Etana Custody) 150 USD free Up to 5 business days, sometimes instant

Average fee compared to competitors

Trade Kraken Binance Huobi Global
Taker 0.1% 0.08% 0.13%
Maker 0.1% 0.06% 0.13%

The fees at Kraken cannot be considered high; they are rather average. Huobi, for example, charges higher fees, but the fees of Binance are lower. At that, Kraken promises zero fees for investors with a volume of over $1,000,000. Neither Binance nor Huobi Global offer this option.

Margin lending

For opening or closing a margin position, all fees for using the margin are added to the trading fees. The clients who opened an account outside of the U.S. can hold an open margin position for up to 365 days.

Currency Quote currency Opening fee Rollover fee
ADA (Cardano) EUR, USD, ETH, BTC 0.02% 0.02% (per 4 hours)
ALGO (Algorand) EUR, USD, BTC 0.02% 0.02% (per 4 hours)
BCH (Bitcoin Cash) EUR, USD, BTC 0.02% 0.02% (per 4 hours)
BTC (Bitcoin) EUR, USD 0.01% 0.01% (per 4 hours)
BTC (Bitcoin) GBP, CAD, USDT 0.02% 0.02% (per 4 hours)
DASH (Dash) EUR, USD, BTC 0.02% 0.02% (per 4 hours)
DOT (Polkadot) ETH, EUR, USD, BTC 0.02% 0.02% (per 4 hours)

Reliability and regulation

9

Jesse Powell is the founder and CEO of the company. Payward, Inc. is the owner of the cryptocurrency exchange. It is registered in San Francisco. The security system has never let down in the entire period of its operation. At least there have been no reports in the media about any major hacker attacks on the user accounts.

Investor funds are held in cold wallets. Traders can turn on two-factor authentication, if they fear for the security of their account. There is a team of experts at the exchange tasked with testing the security system.

Kraken holds an official license for trading crypto futures. The exchange complies with all the rules of AML and KYC. The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) is responsible for licensing the crypto exchange. Kraken is regulated by FinCEN. The funds of crypto exchange clients are held in strictly regulated partner banks, directly in the bank accounts of the clients themselves. Kraken Bank is regulated by the Wyoming State Banking Branch.

Kraken plans to go public in 2022. The exchange is considering a direct listing over IPO. This is an additional factor that plays into the hands of Kraken, as it will significantly increase the transparency of the company and make it accountable to the SEC.

Markets and products

8

The exchange offers access to trading 424 currency pairs, 116 digital currencies (including Tether, which is traded with the US dollar) and 7 fiat currencies, including:

  • USD (US Dollar)
  • EUR (Euro)
  • CAD (Canadian Dollar)
  • AUD (Australian Dollar)
  • GBP (Pound Sterling)
  • CHF (Swiss Franc)
  • JPY (Japanese Yen)
Pros and cons of market diversity on Kraken
Pros
Futures and options trading
Wide selection of instruments for trading in the spot market
Cons
Only 116 coins are traded at the exchange, which is almost 4 times less than on Binance.
Kraken markets
Kraken FTX Binance
Cryptocurrencies 195 395 584
Trading pairs 598 1682 1135
Bitcoin Yes Yes Yes
Ethereum Yes Yes Yes
Altcoins Yes Yes Yes
Futures and options Yes Yes Yes
Cryptocurrency funds (a basket of cryptocurrencies in one lot) No No No
NFT No Yes Yes
Cryptocurrencies (spot)

The exchange offers 116 digital coins that form 418 trading pairs. The following are traded here: Bitcoin (BTC), Ethereum (ETH), Bitcoin Cash (BCH), Tether (USDT) and Polkadot (DOT). The supported traditional currencies include USD, EUR, GBP, CAD, JPY, CHF and AUD.

Cryptocurrencies (Futures)

Kraken allows traders to concluded cryptocurrency futures contracts:

  • Ethereum
  • Litecoin
  • Bitcoin Cash
  • Ripple and others

Kraken allows users to open positions on cryptocurrency futures with a leverage up to 50:1. Collateral in this case is 2% of the conditional volume of trade.

Passive income on Kraken

8

The exchange offers off-chain and on-chain staking for earning passive income. On-chain staking uses Proof-of-Stake blockchain mechanism for receiving the reward.

Benefits of on-chain staking on Kraken compared to staking on other platforms:

  • Instant reward – without the waiting or tie-up periods;
  • Payouts twice a week;
  • One of the highest profitability rates in the industry;
  • Assets can be staked in just three clicks from your Kraken account balance;
  • Instant unstaking.
Currency Rewards per year (RPY) Stake/unstake minimum Reward schedule
Algorand (ALGO) 4.75% 0.000001 ALGO Thursday
Starting at 01:30 UTC
Cardano (ADA) 4%-6% 0.000001 ADA Monday
Starting at 01:30 UTC
Cosmos (ATOM) 7.5% 0.000001 ATOM Sunday and Wednesday
Starting at 01:00 UTC
Ethereum 4%-7% 0.0000000001 ETH Sunday
Starting at 01:30 UTC
Flow (FLOW) 6%-9% 0.00000001 FLOW Tuesday
Starting at 01:30 UTC

The rates for off-chain staking are available in the US dollar, Euro and Bitcoin.

Asset Rewards per year (RPY) Stake/unstake minimum
Bitcoin (BTC) 0.25% 0.00000001 BTC
US Dollar (USD) 2% USD 0.01
Euro (EUR) 1.5% EUR 0.01

Account opening on Kraken

7

User account registration procedure takes about 10 minutes. There is, however, one condition, which many users consider the biggest drawback of the exchange. Simple registration will not allow users to start trading; for that they have to pass verification. The majority of cryptocurrency exchanges require identity verification for access to additional financial instruments or assets. Meanwhile, Kraken obliges every new user to pass verification.

Account opening on Kraken
Pros
With the exception of the verification requirement, the registration is quick.
Cons
It is not possible to trade if you have not passed verification.

Residents of which countries can trade at the exchange

The website of the exchange claims it supports clients from all around the world. Residents of some countries cannot trade on Kraken due to international or local financial and cryptocurrency regulations. The cryptocurrency exchange provides the list of countries, the residents of which can trade at the exchange. For more information follow this link. There are no mentions of the regions where Kraken does not operate.

How to open an account on Kraken:
a step-by-step guide

There are several steps in the registration procedure on the website:

Step
1

Open the official website of Kraken and select your language in the right corner at the bottom of the page.

open an account on Kraken
Step
2

After you’ve changed the language, click Create Account in the top right corner, which opens the “Create Your Account” tab.

Registration on the Kraken exchange
Step
3

Fill out the questions, specify your email, come up with the username and password, tap the box to confirm that you agree to the Terms of Service and Privacy Policy. The activation code will be sent to your email.

Kraken account
Step
4

Enter the activation code and click Activate Account to complete registration.

Kraken Activate Account

Now, let’s take a closer look at the verification procedure. By this time, a user already has a registered account. Here are the steps of the verification:

Step 1. In the top right corner of the profile, click on the username button.

Verification on the Kraken exchange

Step 2. In the pop-down menu, select the third option Get Verified.

Get Verified on Kraken

Step 3. A page will open, where you will need to choose the verification type. Each type has specific limits, transfers and deposit options.

choose the verification type on Kraken

User verification requires proof of identity.

The documents that are acceptable:

  • passport;
  • driver’s license;
  • national identity card;
  • other valid government-issued documents with full legal name, date of birth, photo, issue and expiry dates.

Next, you need to provide your Proof of Residence document, for example:

  • Bank statement;
  • Credit card statement;
  • Residence certificate;
  • Utility bill (water, electricity, gas, internet, phone);
  • Payroll statement -or- Official salary document from employer;
  • Insurance statement;
  • Tax document;

If a client of the exchange is a U.S. citizen, he will be required to provide a photo and a valid SSN (social security number) or ITIN (individual taxpayer identification number).

For each verification level, there is a specific time frame.

Level Approximate verification time frame Type of verification
Express Less than one minute Automatic
Starter 1-2 minutes Automatic
Intermediate 4-5 minutes Automatic
Pro - Individual Several days Non-Automatic
Pro - Business 5 days Non-Automatic

Minimum deposit

Deposits in cryptocurrency are credited within 10 minutes and they are not charged with a fee. The minimum deposit depends on the cryptocurrency a user is funding his account with. More details on the minimum deposit for different digital assets are available here.

Deposits in fiat are charged with a fee. The table below shows the details on the minimum deposit in US dollars.

Deposit method Deposit minimum Deposit fee Processing time
SWIFT
(Bank Frick)
$4 $3 1-5 business days
SWIFT
(Etana Custody)
$150 free Instant or 2-5 business days

Account types

A user can open one of 3 account types. For each type, there are individual deposit and withdrawal limits. Verification procedure for each type is also different. Registration of Intermediate and Pro accounts requires provision of additional information about the person on top of the proof of identity.

Deposit limit Withdrawal limit Other Features
Starter Account Unlimited deposit in cryptocurrency.
Deposit in fiat is not available.
Withdrawal in cryptocurrency – $ 5,000 per day.
Withdrawal in fiat – not available
--
Intermediate Account Unlimited deposit in cryptocurrency.
Deposit in fiat - $100,000 per day.
Withdrawal in cryptocurrency – $500,000 per day.
Withdrawal in fiat - $100,000 per day.
A photo and occupation information is required for verification
Pro Account Unlimited deposit in cryptocurrency.
Deposit in fiat - 10M per day.
Withdrawal in cryptocurrency – $10M per day.
Withdrawal in fiat - $10M per day.
Verification of financial reporting and AML.

Deposit and withdrawal

9

You can fund your account using cryptocurrency or fiat money. The fee depends on the deposit method. The exchange supports the following fiat currencies:

  • USD (US Dollar)
  • EUR (Euro)
  • CAD (Canadian Dollar)
  • AUD (Australian Dollar)
  • GBP (Pound Sterling)
  • CHF (Swiss Franc)
  • JPY (Japanese Yen)

Popular digital coins, such as:

  • Ethereum;
  • Bitcoin;
  • Dash;
  • Litecoin;
  • Ripple.

As well as assets that have just gained recognition:

  • Iconomi;
  • Augur.

Crypto coins are credited to the accounts very fast; within 10 minutes, which cannot be said about fiat currencies. Processing of such deposits can take 1 to 5 days. In the majority of cases, the money is credited within 24 hours, but sometimes it takes longer.

Pros
Support of major currency pairs.
Deposits are credited fast to the account for the most of time. Already 24 hours after the fiat money is credited to the account, you can start trading.
Cons

Deposit and withdrawal options and processing time on Kraken

The exchange uses a complex system for charging deposit fees. The fee depends on the volume of the currency that is being credited to the account, deposit method and currency availability.

Method Fee Deposit/Withdrawal processing time
Bitcoin Free Within 24 hours
Ethereum Free Within 24 hours
Debit/credit cards It varies depending on the currency. In the case with US dollars, the fee ranges from $0 to $10. from 2 to 5 days
Electronic payment systems It varies depending on the currency. In the case of the US dollar, the fee ranges from $0 to $10. from 0 to 5 days

Kraken Trading Platforms

10

Kraken’s distinctive feature is its 3 apps for smartphones that make trading much easier. Android and iOS phone owners can install one of the three apps: New Kraken, Kraken Futures, Kraken Pro.

  • New Kraken is well suited for beginners and undemanding traders. It has all the basic features and instruments for trading and detailed cryptocurrency statistics. The software has a high score in Google Play – 4.2 out of 5.
  • Kraken Futures allows users to trade with leverage up to 1:50. The app provides access to futures exchange CME.
  • Kraken Pro is the best option and the happy medium between the two apps mentioned above. It features all the benefits of New Kraken and Kraken Futures.
Pros
User friendly trading platform trade.kraken.com. Thanks to the Pro interface and intuitive web platform with Complex Order options and advanced API access, it is easy to work on the exchange.
Bollinger Bands and other tools that simplify technical analysis
Cons
Comparative table of features
Web Mobile Desktop
Two-factor authentication Yes Yes Yes
Time frame range From 1 minute to 1 week on the trading platform From 1 minute to 1 week on the trading platform From 1 minute to 1 week on the trading platform
Order types Limit orders, market orders, limit stop-loss orders, market stop-loss orders, limit take profit orders, bracket orders. Limit orders, market orders, limit stop-loss orders, market stop-loss orders, limit take profit orders, bracket orders. Limit orders, market orders, limit stop-loss orders, market stop-loss orders, limit take profit orders, bracket orders.
Quote history Yes Yes Yes
Number of indicators Over 90 0 Over 90
TradingView charts Yes Yes No
Trading platforms. Comparison with competitors
Kraken Binance Huobi Global
Web platform Yes Yes Yes
Android Yes Yes Yes
iOS Yes Yes Yes
Desktop Yes Yes Yes

Trading platform specs

The mobile apps allow users to quickly track changes in quotations and make corresponding decisions. Mobile versions of competitor exchanges can boast only a part of the trading functionality of their web versions.

The web platform is better suited for in-depth market analysis. It is easier to use it to analyze charts and price performance. The app is a good option for quick trading, while the web version is better suited for detailed market research.

Analytics

7

Analytical reports of Kraken experts are periodically published on thematic websites and channels. The YouTube channel of the exchange features webinars, where invited guests and hosts analyze the present state of the digital industry and its growth potential.

Analytical work also includes thematic podcasts, which discuss issues that are relevant to the cryptocurrency industry. Here, you can get useful insights and learn the opinions of experts. The podcasts are published on:

  • iTunes
  • Spotify
  • Google Podcasts
  • Youtube
Pros
Free insights and analysts of the current digital climate.
Good level of reviews.
Cons

Education

8

The exchange regularly publishes educational articles on crypto trading on its website. There is a separate section dedicated to the 5 most popular cryptocurrencies in 2022. There is a short history of cryptocurrency development and a price chart for the last 24 hours.

The Kraken team launched a series of articles Crypto 101 for learning the basics of cryptocurrencies. Here are several topics that they cover:

  • Where and how can you get Bitcoin?
  • Why is Bitcoin so volatile?
  • What is blockchain and how does it work?

For those who prefer watching videos over reading articles, Kraken exchange has a YouTube channel. The channel features all educational materials as videos and their analysis is accompanied by explanations of experts. You can also view Kraken webinars, where the prospects of cryptocurrencies, means of protecting your personal account and other issues are discussed.

Pros
There is enough information for full immersion in crypto trading
There is educational material on cybersecurity
Regular podcasts and webinars
Cons

Customer support

10

If you have a problem working with the exchange, you can find an answer independently in the vast support section. Despite the fact that the exchange’s website is translated in 13 languages, the support section with information is available only in the following languages:

  • English;
  • French;
  • Italian;
  • Portuguese;
  • Spanish;
  • Japanese.

If you failed to find an answer to your question, you can contact a support agent. There is also an alternative option – you can communicate with customer support by email.

Pros
A customer support agent can be contacted by phone.
Support answers questions within 5-10 minutes in the live chat.
Cons

Communication channels of Kraken

Latest news about Kraken are published on the exchange’s social media:

Customer support languages of Kraken

The website of the exchange is translated into 12 languages:

You can use any of these languages to contact customer support.

Kraken Bonuses and Promo

8

The exchange offers investors beneficial conditions of partnership through an affiliate program. The payout for each attracted user is 20% of the trading fees collected from him. The maximum bonus amount per one referral is $1,000. Features of the affiliate program:

  • Trading fee calculations include spot trade fees, margin opening fees and margin rollover fees.
  • No deadlines.
  • Payouts directly to your bank account instead of an exchange account. Payouts by bank transfer. You will receive the payment in your bank account's default currency.

Summary

8,5

Let’s sum up this review and talk about who Kraken is best suitable for.

The following factors need to be taken into account before starting to trade:

  • Small number of traded coins can be a turn-off for experienced traders, who are attracted by the variety of assets.
  • Kraken allows you to reduce the trading fees to zero subject to specific trading volume. This attracts experienced traders with serious capital to the exchange.
  • Through mandatory verification, the exchange enforces KYC, which clearly benefits honest traders who seek transparency.
  • Absence of a demo account makes it difficult to learn and develop the skills of working with the exchange’s tools.

So, here’s our conclusion: Kraken is a reliable platform with a long history. It has never been hacked; it is accredited in the developed countries. Reliability and low fees attract players with big capital. All of this allows the cryptocurrency exchange to lead in terms of liquidity ratio (second only to the largest trading platform Binance).

Reviews

4.2
9 reviews
@cobie
5 days ago
Awesome and transparent crypto exchange, one of the best in its industry. The web version is perfect but the app left a negative impression. Can’t find words to describe. You simply can’t get anything done on the app other than to view your balance. So I beg you guys to really look into this and work on giving users a usable and more practical application.
J. Scholz
6 days ago
Kraken is one of few CEXes I prefer due to their non-negotiable standards on security. App and website are both just great. 24/7 live support never fails: anytime I have a question about my account or about trading and the terminology involved, support is always there with prompt and satisfactory replies. What annoys me a bit is that sometimes you need to submit extra verification for some transactions, but it seems to just be a security measure.
gangsta
13 days ago
I already have experience in buying bitcoin. The 72 hours waiting time for so-called security reasons sucks a lot and looks like a massive joke. It didn’t let me withdraw crypto into my wallet. Just said that "0" is available. Still waiting.
J. Gopalu
13 days ago
Guys, there’s a lot of different crypto-exchanges. You need to pick what suits you. Personally, Kraken works fine for me. For passive income, I use an affiliate program from Kraken. Referral, typical (one-level), but still this is good income.
mberre
14 days ago
Before Kraken, I used the services of other cryptocurrency exchanges, but didn’t stay there long all because of problems with payment discipline. By a lucky chance I was recommended to try Kraken. I’ve been trading here for a year and a half. No complaints so far.
GoobyMike
17 days ago
I have been using Kraken.com since 2017; so it’s been many years. I am an active trader there and have always been active over the past years on Kraken. I highly recommend it, whether you just want to stake your cryptos or buy your first bitcoins .. best exchange, most trustworthy of all, US based with a great CEO.
GhostMST
18 days ago
Long support responses. They block the purchase of cryptocurrency through a bank transfer. Otherwise, decent service and platform.
gdj16
18 days ago
I have used Kraken chat support and phone support and both times I had access to an agent, literally within seconds. I’ve never been kept waiting long, and the support was very direct and friendly.
giancarlo bravo
19 days ago
So far, so good. Heard people complain about Kraken closing customer accounts, banning people, etc. So far I haven’t had any issues. The only problem I had was a verification process at the beginning. Now everything seems to be fine.