Binance vs Binance.US: Which Exchange is Best?
Binance vs Binance.US - If you want to trade on Binance, the choice is relatively simple. If you are based in the United States, Binance.US is your only available option. If you are outside the U.S., you can trade on Binance's main exchange. This blog will explain the major differences between each platform.
The cryptocurrency industry has come a long way in recent years. More than ever before, crypto traders have endless options on where they want to trade. They can trade on centralized exchanges, decentralized exchanges, and even brokerages such as Robinhood.
When it comes to centralized exchanges, however, Binance is likely the first name that comes to mind. While it's an excellent exchange with ample amounts of liquidity, it is no longer available to U.S. citizens. Therefore, this blog will help to summarize the differences between Binance and Binance.US, so that crypto traders can better understand what to expect when trading on each exchange.
Binance vs Binance.US: An Introduction
In 2017, Changpeng Zhao (also known as CZ), founded Binance. Zhao’s background includes developing high frequency trading software as well as working as an executive at another cryptocurrency exchange, OKCoin.
Since its inception, Binance has quickly become the largest cryptocurrency exchange in the world. Binance is primarily known for its low fees and large amounts of liquidity. The exchange currently offers more than 500 cryptocurrencies and over 1,200 trading pairs. This certainly makes it an attractive place to trade as crypto investors can have their pick of almost any digital asset they wish to trade.
Despite its size and name recognition, Binance has had issues with regulators. In 2017, Binance left China and re-located to Japan and Taiwan before eventually moving to Malta. However, in February 2020, after Malta announced that Binance was not actually within its jurisdiction, the exchange quickly changed positions and declared that it doesn’t have a headquarters because Bitcoin doesn’t have a central headquarters.
In May 2021, at the Ethereal Virtual Summit, CZ reiterated his stance that Binance has no central headquarters when he said the following:
“Everybody’s definition of a headquarters of a company is different. When you ask how you define a headquarters --- is that an office where people sit? I worked from home for the last three and a half years. Our leadership team are not sitting in one office, we don’t have a clear place where we can go, by most people’s normal definitions of a headquarters that we can call a headquarters. So, when people ask me, I don’t want to give them a wrong answer just to satisfy their definition.”
Although CZ is the leader of Binance, he is not in charge of running Binance.US. In fact, in April 2021, Binance.US announced that it hired Brian Brook as its CEO. Brian Brooks is a former Coinbase executive who also served as Donald Trump’s Acting Comptroller of the Currency.
Binance.US launched in September 2019 in order to serve customers from the U.S.A. Although the exchange got off to a fairly slow start, Binance.US has grown into one of the largest cryptocurrency exchanges in the United States. In fact, April was a milestone month as Binance.US announced that its total trading volume surpassed $28 billion.
Now that you're familiar with the basics of both Binance and Binance.US, let’s cover some specific topics that you’re interested in.
Binance vs Binance.US: Which Exchange Offers the Most Cryptocurrencies?
Although bitcoin may be the most popular cryptocurrency, many crypto traders want to build a diversified portfolio comprised of projects across many facets of the crypto space. In fact, diversification is so important that our team has been building an index trader, which will allow our customers to easily trade a basket of cryptos that align with their specific goals. This will be released shortly.
Of course, in order to diversify, a customer needs to be able to trade a wide variety of altcoins. When it comes to cryptocurrency listings, Binance is the undisputed king. But how does Binance.US measure up?
Binance may not offer as many cryptocurrencies as decentralized exchanges such as Uniswap, but when it comes to centralized exchanges, Binance is the leader. With more than 500 cryptocurrencies and over 1,200 trading pairs available for its customers, crypto traders who prioritize having access to the most possible coins should strongly consider Binance.
Although Binance.US is growing fast and is now considered to be one of the top exchanges in the United States, it doesn’t measure up to its parent company, Binance.
In fairness, this is not due to any failing from Binance.US specifically, but rather, is due to the regulatory hurdles it must contend with. That being said, Binance.US currently has 53 cryptocurrencies (including stablecoins) available for trading.
Verdict: When it comes to the number of cryptocurrencies available for trading, Binance.US is relatively in line with other U.S. based crypto exchanges such as Coinbase, Kraken, and Gemini. However, it certainly cannot compete with its parent company, Binance.
Binance vs Binance.US: Which Exchange Offers the Lowest Trading Fees?
Trading fees are extremely important when evaluating where to trade. While some exchanges like Coinbase (Coinbase Pro is much cheaper) and Gemini are known for being rather expensive, Binance is known for offering some of the lowest cryptocurrency trading fees in the world. Once again, U.S. citizens are probably wondering whether Binance.US can match Binance in this category.
Binance uses a tiered fee structure, which clearly shows how much customers will pay in trading fees based upon their level.
Source: Binance Fees
At the lowest volume level, VIP 0, trading fees are 0.1% for both makers and takers. For those customers who generate enough volume to qualify for the top level, VIP 9, trading fees are 0.02% for makers and 0.04% for takers.
Additionally, there are a few ways in which customers can reduce the amount of fees they pay. If customers choose to pay trading fees with Binance’s native token, BNB, the fees will be reduced by 25%. The second way in which fees can be reduced is by referring friends to Binance. If a user pays fees with BNB and refers a friend, the most they will end up paying in trading fees is 0.06% for each trade. That is one of the best deals in all of crypto.
The good news for U.S. customers is that Binance.US does offer the same low trading fees that its parent company, Binance, does. The only slight difference is that the US exchange offers 10 VIP levels whereas the international platform only has 9 VIP levels. However, for almost all traders, that won't make a difference.
Source: Binance.US Fees
Binance.US users will also be able to take advantage of the same discount opportunities available on Binance. The referral bonuses as well as the discount for holding BNB are available. As a reminder, Binance's fees are the lowest in the industry even before factoring in the discounts.
Verdict: This is definitely a tie. Binance.US offers the same low trading fees that Binance does. Therefore, while Americans may not have access to as many cryptocurrencies on the U.S. platform, they will at least pay the lowest trading fees in the world.
Binance vs Binance.US: Which Exchange has More Liquidity?
Liquidity measures how easy (or difficult) it is to swap one asset for another. Traders want to be able to convert one asset for another asset while having a minimal impact on the price. The more illiquid an asset is, the harder it will be to trade it without causing a major price change. Therefore, liquidity is an extremely important factor to consider before deciding where to trade.
Binance has grown into the world's largest cryptocurrency exchange. During the month of May, Binance had spot trading volume of approximately $1.5 trillion, which was a 63% increase from April. As you can see in the image below, the volume traded on Binance is significantly higher than its closest competitors, Huobi and Okex.
Since Binance doesn't allow for US Dollar deposits and trading, most of the volume on the exchange occurs against stablecoin pairs such as BTC/USDT, BTC/USDC, and BTC/BUSD (BUSD is Binance's native stablecoin). One other factor to note is that although Binance does have more volume than any other exchange, that volume is spread across a much larger pool of cryptocurrencies than other exchanges such as Coinbase and Kraken. Therefore, it's always important to look at the specific asset you're interested in trading in order to determine how liquid (or illiquid) it is.
Earlier, we presented a chart indicating how Binance has gone from essentially a non-player in the U.S. crypto market a few quarters ago to now doing significant volume. With the recent hiring of Brian Brooks, who certainly has the connections to tap into the right areas, Binance.US could be set up for a very bright future.
But what about now? Well, Binance.US certainly doesn't have the same level of liquidity that Binance does. If we look at the top traded pair on each exchange over the last 24 hours, BTC/USDT for Binance, and BTC/USD for Binance.US, the volumes are as follows:
BTC/USDT: > $3 Billion
BTC/USD: $66 million
This is just one example, but it definitely highlights the difference between trading on Binance and Binance.US. Although small traders won't make much of an impact on either exchange, all else being equal, most traders would prefer to trade against the larger book, rather than the smaller one.
Verdict: Binance is the obvious winner when it comes to liquidity. It has been around for a longer time and has grown into the world's largest cryptocurrency exchange. However, over the course of just a few years, Binance.US has grown into one of the top U.S. crypto exchanges. The future certainly looks bright for Binance.US.
Binance vs Binance.US: Conclusion
Both Binance and Binance.US are two of the most popular cryptocurrency exchanges on the planet. Although Binance has been around longer and established itself as the king of crypto trading, Binance.US is growing rapidly and appears to be making all the right moves such as hiring Brian Brooks as its CEO.
Although Binance has the edge over Binance.US in most categories, Binance is only available to customers who live outside the United States. US citizens that still wish to trade with Binance are only permitted to open an account with Binance.US.
Binance may be the top choice for crypto traders across the world but it appears regulators are getting fed up. On June 27, 2021, the Financial Conduct Authority (the U.K.'s financial watchdog), banned Binance Markets Ltd., an affiliate of Binance, from operating in the United Kingdom. As countries around the world continue to take steps toward further regulating cryptocurrency, Binance may have to make some hard choices.