The Binance.us crypto exchange is Binance’s arm for American users. Binance, the company behind both, was founded in 2017. The level of achievements by the original Binance exchange in a few short years has been unmatched by US exchanges, as CEO, Changpeng Zhao, has not had to contend with American regulators. That is, up until September of 2019, when Binance.us launched.
Even though it’s the new kid on the block in the US, it has the massive Binance Global exchange behind it, pushing the bounds of innovation as much as possible within America’s regulatory environment.
The Basic trading interface of Binance.us has a simplified trading interface, promising a 1-click Buy-Sell feature and an easy price alert set-up. The exchange provides helpful explanations of features within the navigation, for instance, it offers market as well as stop limit orders with the stop limit option displaying a question mark leading to a definition.
Other than that, it’s a typical order book set up: lots of white space with the order history and open orders on the same page at the bottom. Dark mode is also available but still presents a simplified trading experience. Depth charts are available with Basic, which is a nice touch.
Security features include a unique sign-in puzzle that is interestingly combined with a marketing offer. Google Authenticator is required for 2-factor authorization (2FA).
Something that stands out on Binance.us Basic is its wide array of USDT stablecoin trading pairs with digital assets, which is not commonly seen on US exchanges. Coinbase and Gemini have their own stablecoins, while Kraken offers USDT pairs with fiat currencies but no crypto pairings. Binance.us provides 30 USDT trading pairs with other cryptocurrencies and a few stablecoins.
Binance.us has put together a very well developed FAQ with guides to everything. The content is a mix of videos and text, and displays a very mature understanding of new crypto traders, likely a result of what they’ve learned during the last few years with Binance.com, which has seen massive volume and exponential growth.
Generally speaking, spot trading fees are 0.1% on Binance.us with the instant buy/sell fee of 0.5%. These represent some of the lowest crypto trading fees available in the US.
Binance.us has a unique fee structure where maker and taker fees are reduced when you hold tiered amounts of Binance’s BNB token. You can trade up to $50,000 without having to maintain a Binance Coin (BNB) balance.
Trades above that amount are tiered as are the required BNB balances necessary to trade the large amounts. When the fees are paid in BNB (instead of USD), there’s a 25% fee reduction. So the traders moving large amounts of crypto around will need to have correspondingly large BNB balances in order to make those bigger traders.
Minimum and maximum trade limits vary by coin.
Here is a complete Binance.us trading fee schedule.
Fees for crypto withdrawals are low compared with Binance.us competitors. It depends on each coin. As an example, BTC withdrawals to an external wallet currently cost about $10.00, regardless of the withdrawal amount (compare with Coinbase’s 18% fee for $175.00 BTC withdrawal). Altcoins like Ethereum currently cost under $10 per withdrawal and most others have fees per withdrawal that are under $1.00.
Crypto withdrawal limits
Fiat Withdrawal limits
This varies, and the terms for this change quite frequently. There are three verification levels: basic, advanced, and fiat. The complete documentation requirements and timing for these with current terms can be found here.
The already sleek user experience in Binance.us is elevated in the Advanced mode. It also differentiates itself from other US exchanges here with advanced charting and unique features such as OCO orders.
Binance.us offers limit, market, and OCO orders, or “One Cancels the Other”, which enables traders to place 2 orders at the same time. It combines the limit order with the stop limit order. Only one can be executed and cancelling one will automatically cancel the other.
The dollar cost averaging feature on Binance.us is not quite as intuitive as on Gemini and Kraken exchanges, but it does have a page enabling traders to set up recurring buys from the drop down at the top of your dashboard.
Traders may stake EOS, ONE, VeChain, ATOM, XTZ, and ALGO to earn “in-kind” token rewards, which range from 0.05% apy to 10% apy, depending on the coin. Minimums stakes depend on the coin and range from $.01 to $150.00. The interface for staking is easy to understand and also offers a quick buy feature for those that need to buy coins to get started with staking.
Traders can request a quote for over the Counter (OTC) trades directly from the Binance.us website. The minimum buy is $10,000 equivalent.
Both the basic and advanced trading interfaces on Binance.us may be more suitable for advanced traders. However, the AppStore reviews of Binance.us are favorable overall, with a 4.5 star average from 5900 reviews. The negative reviews are primarily regarding account funds being held or unavailable to users, and long wait times for customer support. A cumbersome verification process has also been noted, which is no surprise as Binance has only just begun integrating its US-based trading platform.
Navigating the Binance.us site should not pose any problems for anyone. It may not be as sleek as or user friendly as Gemini, and not as simplified as Coinbase, but it also provides some unique touches you won’t see elsewhere as well as helpful guides and call out boxes to explain technical topics along the way.
Having only launched a few months ago, it’s not surprising that Binance.us is struggling with customer support, especially in light of the bull market it has been operating in since its inception. Overwhelmingly, the complaints are about withdrawal issues and slow customer support, with some users citing 2-hour chat waits and getting their accounts disabled.
The number of users on Binance.us are not available publicly, though Google Play does provide download information, showing the exchange’s android app has more than 100,000 downloads.
The Basic trading view includes 1-minute to 1-month windows, nice contrasting colors, and provides several ways to customize your screen.
In the Advanced view, which is also linked to TradingView, traders have many more tools and options for customization.
Binance.us benefits from the experience of its parent company, Binance.com as far as leading security protocols. It’s high grade security has made Binance.com one of the most trusted crypto exchanges. Additionally, Binance.us implements high level user security by requiring a 2FA with Google Authenticator and email confirmations for transactions.
All US dollars owned by fiat-verified users are stored in pooled custodial accounts on site and are insured by the FDIC.
With withdrawals, for each transaction you’ll receive an email confirmation that you must click on to proceed. That is after completing a souped up version of a Captcha puzzle at each log in.
As far as reliability, Binance.us uses the same technology as Binance.com, which can process 1.4 million orders per second. Binance.us does not have the reputation for downages during bitcoin bull markets like Coinbase, but the lack of any status page makes this difficult to discern.
The company behind Binance.us (Binance.com) was hacked for about $40,000,000 in 2019. Users were refunded for any losses. Binance.us has not been hacked.
Binance.us promises to be an exciting addition to the US crypto exchange market. Bringing fast paced, cutting edge technologies and super low fees, it can be America’s version of Binance.com. However it still pales in comparison to Binance.com, which offers leverage, exotic futures, credit card payments, and many more digital assets.
It does stand out against the other big US exchanges in one major way – the fees are much lower than on Coinbase, Kraken or Gemini. It also provides a competitive level of liquidity.
There’s plenty of info about how to buy/sell/trade on the Binance.us platform, so while the interface is a bit more complex than other US exchanges, a new trader is instructed along the way with easy to understand graphics and guides.
What you can expect with Binance as a company is to see rapid fire innovations that propel American crypto exchanges into ever new territories. One recent innovation involved cutting their already super low spot fees by 25% for users that held certain balances of Binance’s BNB token. Not only does that fee reduction benefit users, but it also ensures liquidity for BNB.
Margin trading is not available, however CEO Catherine Cooley has indicated they are moving to add margin trading in 2021).
Automated trading is not a Binance.us feature, but crypto traders have integrated their own trading bots and programs to initiate automated trading on the exchange. One report noted that at any given time, 1000s of bots are executing trades on Binance.us.
Self custody – At this juncture, none of the American exchanges offer this feature.
Automated tax reporting is not available.