London, 19 February 2019: CryptoCompare today published its January 2019 Exchange Review, offering institutional and retail investors insights into the cryptocurrency exchange industry.
The January Monthly Review provides an overview of the current exchange landscape as well as a monthly evaluation of how spot volumes vs futures volumes have developed historically, including both crypto exchanges (BitMEX and BitflyerFX) and traditional exchanges (CBOE and CME). The review also focuses on how volumes have developed historically for the top trans-fee mining and decentralised exchanges.
In January, we continue to see positive signs of a maturation of the crypto markets, with the news that CoinFlex will launch physically-settled bitcoin futures in February; Bittrex introducing an OTC trading desk, supporting 200 digital assets; Binance supporting fiat pair trading across 58 jurisdictions; Komid Exchange managers are sent to prison for faking volumes; and news that the VanEck-SolidX bitcoin ETF proposal was re-submitted by CBOE.
- Top Exchange Volumes — ZB was the top exchange by total volume in January, followed by Binance and OKEX. The total volume for ZB in January was 19.6 billion USD, a 6.2% increase from December. The total volumes for Binance and OKEX fell 15% and 19.4% respectively in January.
- Trans-Fee Mining Exchanges — CoinBene was the largest TFM exchange in January, followed by ZBG and EXX. CoinBene traded 10 billion USD in total volume in January, down 3.2% since December. ZBG traded 6 billion USD and EXX traded 5.5 billion USD, up 18 and 20% since December respectively.
- Decentralised Exchanges — Ethermium was the largest DEX in January, followed by WavesDEX and OpenLedger. DEXs continue to represent only a small fraction of global spot exchange volume (0.19%), trading a monthly total of 385 million USD.
- Predominant Fee Type — Exchanges that charge taker fees represented 84% of total exchange volume in January, while those that implement trans-fee mining (TFM) represent 15%. Fee-charging exchanges traded a total of 141 billion USD in January, while those that implement TFM traded 25 billion USD. The remaining volume represented trading by exchanges that charge no trading fees, totalling 2.8 billion USD.
- Futures Trading — The proportion of futures trading volume decreased from 28% in December to 24% in January. BitFlyerFX traded the highest amount of BTC futures volume in January with a daily average transactional value of 1.13 billion USD (down 23% since December), followed by BitMEX perpetual futures at 665 million USD (down 41% since December). Futures products from traditional regulated exchanges (CME and CBOE) represented 11.7% of the Bitcoin to USD futures market in January, up from 6.36% in December.
- Fiat Capabilities — Monthly trading volume from exchanges that offer fiat pairs decreased by 26.5% in January to 37.5 billion USD, while crypto to crypto exchange volume decreased by 7.2% to 132 billion USD. Following this large decline in volume from exchanges that offer fiat trading pairs, in January they represented 22% of total spot volume, down from 26% in December.
- Bitcoin to Fiat Volumes — In January, 48% of Bitcoin trading into fiat was made up of the US Dollar (1.47 million BTC), down from 57% in December. BTC trading into JPY decreased less (-24%) than that traded into USD (-49%) and EUR (-37%) since December. The USD, JPY and EUR made up 90% of total trading from Bitcoin into fiat in the previous month and remained dominance in January at 89% of fiat volume.
- Bitcoin to Stablecoin Volumes — Bitcoin trading into USDT represented 65% of trading into stablecoins and fiat coins in January, up from the 63.7% seen in December. USDT, PAX, USDC and GUSD represent the most popular stablecoins in terms of Bitcoin trading volume. BTC trading into PAX increased 66% in January at 114,000 BTC in total; however, USDT still represents that majority at 5.9 million BTC.
Charles Hayter, CEO of CryptoCompare, said:
“Despite market activity slowing, we are seeing increasing signs of a maturing crypto market, given that exchanges are setting up OTC trading desks, derivatives and index products. We continue to focus our efforts on providing retail and institutional investors with accurate data that they can trust as the basis for their investment decisions.”
The Methodology: CryptoCompare’s Monthly Exchange Review evaluates the consistency and quality of exchange data, which is incorporated into CryptoCompare’s real-time Aggregate Index Methodology (the CCCAGG), used to calculate the best price estimation of cryptocurrency pairs traded across global exchanges. It aggregates transactional data from more than 70 exchanges using a 24-hour volume weighted average for every cryptocurrency pair. Constituent CCCAGG exchanges are reviewed and amended each month to ensure that the most representative and reliable market data is used in CCCAGG pair pricing calculations.
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CryptoCompare is the global cryptocurrency market data aggregator, providing retail and institutional investors with real-time, high-quality and reliable market and pricing data on 5,000+ coins and 200,000+ currency pairs globally, bridging the gap between the crypto asset and traditional financial markets.
By aggregating and analysing tick data from globally recognised exchanges and seamlessly integrating different datasets in the cryptocurrency price, CryptoCompare provides a comprehensive overview of the market and a fundamental value matrix. At a granular level, CryptoCompare produces cryptocurrency trade data, order book data, block explorer data and social data, taxonomy reports and a suite of cryptocurrency indices.
Acting as a gatekeeper for reliable, accurate and clean data, that can be trusted as the basis for investment decisions, CryptoCompare adheres to rigorous standards to safeguard data integrity, normalising global data sources to ensure consistency and confidence in the market.
Notes to editors:
Data methodology: how do we assess exchange data?
We assess exchanges on the basis of spot 24-hour volume and pricing data. The current process operates as follows: for each exchange, the 24-hour volume and price of every live trading pair is recorded. Each pair volume is compared to the total market volume for that specific pair and assigned a market share ranking. Pricing for each pair is then compared to that of the CCCAGG pair, and a percentage price difference is calculated. Finally, a 24-hour volume weighted % price difference per pair is calculated to produce a figure for how close the overall exchange pricing differences are to that of the CCCAGG.
As a general guideline, CryptoCompare assumes that exchanges with an overall percentage pricing difference of under 10% is within acceptable boundaries. The reasons for pricing differences across exchanges may be related to a number of factors that include exchange fees, jurisdiction, tax considerations among a series of other factors. It is, however, the first indicator of acceptability within the CCCAGG exchange list.