Bitstamp vs Kraken

Suppose you start working with crypto and do not know yet which exchange is best for you? High demand is a marker of crypto niche today, so a lot of options to choose here is obvious. Or is it at least the appearance of the fact that there are many exchanges here. Throwing on the first available options is not the best tactic, anyway.

What can be an easy way to choose a quality and reliable exchange for work? Of course, reviews. But in order to read reviews of all popular cryptocurrency exchanges and make conclusions, you have to spend a lot of time analyzing information. Therefore, you’d better narrow down your search criteria initially. Sites, that are related to crypto world, appear today as mushrooms after rain due to the boom of recent years.

How about the idea to pay attention to those exchanges that have been working since “ancient” times? If they were relevant, when no one heard anything about crypto, and could live up to our time and reach a high level of popularity, all these facts already speak about the great potential. Probably, here you can solve your problems on a regular basis (without risks to your money).

Again, but which exchange option to choose from the list of remaining candidates? The search task has already been simplified and there’s only a few options to choose now. You can make a deep analysis. Today we’ll oppose two old market players as an example: Bitstamp vs Kraken. There is no doubt that one of them will suit your taste. So let’s see, how can these monsters of the industry withstand a direct confrontation of the facts with each other?

We will look at their pros and cons at key points, but let’s start with a brief history of each site.

Kraken vs Bitstamp History

Bitstamp is a crypto exchange that appeared in the UK. It works since 2011. There are three main offices in London, Luxembourg and New York. The license was obtained in Luxembourg. It is regulated by the Luxembourg Finance Supervisory Commission. This fact gives Bitstamp odds against the rest of the exchanges, most of which are not regulated at all. Commission’s license ensures that the company make reports to them from time to time. Bitstamp is registered as a “payment authority”, so you can always safely send and receive money from the exchange. This project is well known in the cryptocurrency community and at the financial market in general. Forbes, Coindesk, Reuters and other authoritative sources have already written about. Bitstamp also deserves attention due to work with Ripple, CACEIS and Swissquote.

Kraken is a fairly popular cryptocurrency exchange, which is known by both experienced traders and newcomers. The site may have a considerable trading volume and reputation in the cryptocurrency community. It was launched in 2011 (based in San Francisco, USA). Jesse Powell is a founder and SEO of Kraken. It is interesting to note that Kraken was the first crypto exchange to appear in Bloomberg trading terminal. In just the past few years, the company bought a couple of small projects that provided exchange services. It was a way for a company to strengthen its influence in Europe, and this move works perfectly. The exchange has received an excellent reputation due to the fact that it always tries to work honestly and legally. There are no any serious scandals yet. Moreover, the platform continued to provide services to the full during that period a couple years ago when lots of competitors ceased to exist due to epidemic of hacker attacks.

These facts indicate that we are talking about two reliable service providers in their field. Details will help to make a choice.

Bitstamp vs Kraken: What are the currencies you can deal with?

Bitstamp does not supports lots of exchange pairs in comparison with competitors. This exchange significantly loses in this parameter due to Kraken’s options. This exchange mainly works with Bitcoin (BTC), Litecoin (LTC), Ripple (XRP), EUR and USD. During the trade process, you can use different orders, and this fact means that you get more profit while making deals.

At the same time, the volume of trading at Bitstamp exceeds $ 200 million per day. The exchange is one of the most popular trading platforms in the world and one of the largest in terms of buy/sell scale. It often takes top places in various stock exchange ratings. more than 60% of the total turnover comes from Bitcoin (BTC/USD pair), and the remaining 40% are distributed to all other directions almost equally.

Kraken has long been in the top of trading volumes. The daily volume exceeds a quarter of a million dollars. Kraken is widespread in other countries due to the fact that it allows you to replenish and withdraw funds in different currencies: USD, EUR and also Canadian dollar, Japanese yen, UK pound etc. Kraken also supports a great number of cryptocurrencies. Here users will be able to trade both the most popular, oldest coins and new trendy types of crypto. For example, Bitcoin, Ethereum, Litecoin, Ethereum Classic, Dash and Ripple are available here. It supports more than 150 pairs in general.

So, for example, if you compare Bitstamp vs Kraken, Ripple or Bitcoin available everywhere, but Kraken contains many more options.


Bitstamp charges a user commission for trade operations, but it does so with the help of a flexible system. By increasing the volume of trading, commissions become lower. For users with volume that equals 20 thousand dollars or less, there’s 0.25% commission. If the volume increases, fee drops down up to 0.1% ($20 million and more during 30 days).

Kraken’s basic commission volume is 0.24% of the transaction amount. But here you also can drop the percentage down by increasing personal trading volume.

So, conditions of both exchanges are about the same here.

Kraken vs Bitstamp: Security & support issues

Bitstamp implements a variety of measures to protect user data. The ability to connect two-factor authentication is noteworthy. It is provided by Authenticator (Google or Duo Mobile), and you can turn it on in your personal account easily. In addition, notifications of important actions in account are available to the user. You get them to e-mail. This will allow you to receive up-to-date information about the status of your account and to respond in time to possible changes from outside. Well, if we talk about technical support service, users often report about slow response. It can be related to the fact that the industry is growing up very quickly now. More and more people are starting to work in it. The exchange does its best to respond as quick and accurately as possible.

Kraken is known as a very safe cryptocurrency exchange. During its existence, there was not a single data leak. At the same time, two-factor authentication is the only way to secure your account. Users pass it at the entrance both to the personal account and trading page. It is important to say that Kraken is the first Bitcoin exchange that has passed a cryptographic audit. This proves a high level of reliability and security. The platform’s technical support service is generally functioning well. Since 2017, there are frequent delays in responding that the creators of the exchange associate with the influx of new users. This is a typical situation that has gradually returned to normal. If you encounter a similar problem, be sure to get an answer anyway.

The situation is about the same: both exchanges are very secure, but they respond to support service requests relatively slowly. At the same time, Kraken is considered as the benchmark of user data security.

Bitsmap vs Kraken: final thoughts

In general, the sites look quite similar. Let’s list the positive and negative sides of each crypto exchange once again to make the final picture of the situation.

Bitstamp is an open and transparent crypto exchange with a long history. It has truly in sage here. The exchange rate is very adequate due to the large money turnover. The site is adapted for inexperienced users. Also, there’s a lot of payment methods available. The disadvantages include the mandatory verification, which does not allow the user to remain completely anonymous. Also, users regularly complain about a small number of currencies for exchange, and also about only one language of interface and support. It has English language of the interface and support only, and it is difficult to understand everything quickly.

The main Kraken’s advantage in the background of any other competitor is the number of trading pairs. There are all cryptocurrencies that deserve attention at the time of your presence on the site, and the user can trade in many fiat currencies (and not just the US dollar or the euro). Other major benefits include reliable site’s operation, the best security system on the market and the flexible user authentication system. Speaking of the latter fact, the user is not obliged to show personal data. At the same time, verification is mandatory and its absence blocks a number of working functions. This causes user dissatisfaction. Also, the site is completely in English; it has no translation into other languages.

Generally speaking, you should pay attention to both exchanges during Kraken vs Bitstamp comparison. Each of them has almost identical lists of great positive sides and small flaws. The main difference is in the range of currencies for work. If you need basic cryptocurrencies, Bitstamp is OK. If there is a need to work with a large range of popular crypto titles, it is better to focus on Kraken.