Bitfinex removes minimum deposit limits
If there was a time to welcome new users, this would probably be it.
Bitfinex has removed its minimum deposit limits today, dropping them from a hefty $10,000 to a considerably less hefty $0, and the traders rejoiced.
faking finaly, now i can send my 12 dollars in btc and make the markets tremble!
— Eönwë (@BlackbeardEonwe) April 9, 2019
"The update comes in response to overwhelming demand over the past six months from a wide variety of traders seeking to access the unique professional experience available at Bitfinex, but without requiring the upfront equity," Bitfinex said in its announcement.
But one of the main reasons, says Bitfinex CTO Paolo Ardoino, is "to get more dev community more involved."
By removing the $10,000 minimum, it's much easier for developers to get more involved with Bitfinex's open-source efforts.
"Bitfinex is quite significantly dev driven at its core and we want to let other devs building/contributing easily on/to our ecosystem," Ardoino added.
It's a notable shift for several other reasons.
A new option for traders
The opening signals a sizable shift in the still-small field of "real" cryptocurrency exchanges, which in this case refers to the top exchanges by legitimate volume.
Binance and Bitfinex have tended to be the front-runners for active traders, but their offerings have previously seen them being a bit more complementary than competitive. Binance has been one of the main go-tos for retail enthusiasts, while Bitfinex with its big minimums is aimed at the pros.
High minimums have been emblematic of Bitfinex for a while, so this is a significant shift.
Bitfinex has been known to periodically encounter banking difficulties, which has led to some creative workarounds in the past.
These workarounds have most likely made payment processing a little slower and more expensive for Bitfinex than for some other businesses, naturally skewing it more towards big-dollar transfers. That Bitfinex is willing to handle lower value payments now suggests that it has found some more reliable banking arrangements.
This move comes less than a month after Tether, the tangentially Bitfinex-related stablecoin, revealed that it wasn't 100% backed by cash as it has previously claimed, and that the coin's backing might include other cryptocurrencies or even the assets of partners such as Bitfinex.
A cynic might jump to the conclusion that this move is related to Tether, whose market cap has increased by a cool couple hundred million dollars in recent days.
But a less cynical eye might note that crypto trading is booming right now, and that there's a lot of enthusiasm racing through the markets. If there was any time in 2019 for Bitfinex to throw open its doors to more users, this would be it.
Disclosure: The author does not hold any cryptocurrencies at the time of writing.