Since we have been active in the crypto industry for 10 years (we still remember MTGox and BTC-e), today we want to make a personal ranking where we will include what we think are the best centralized exchanges to trade cryptocurrencies in 2021. Obviously we are die-hard fans of Uniswap-style DEXs, but occasionally a good CEX comes in handy! On CoinGecko, CoinMarketCap or other sites of the industry you will find the same rankings maybe with different placements, as they all use different data to rank exchanges. As I said, this is a personal ranking derived from years of experience in the industry! Let’s get started!
Best Centralised Exchanges of 2021
Binance – While some people prefer Coinbase, we place BINANCE at the top of the list without a second thought. We have been using this exchange since its creation in 2017 and have never encountered any problems whatsoever. Lately there have been a few minor issues due to the sudden increase in users, but usually all these issues are resolved within minutes. Binance is also very selective for new projects and is always strict with abandoned projects, as they delist them often. Volumes are great and security has always been the best in the crypto world (ever heard of Binance being hacked? I haven’t).
Coinbase – On par with Binance but also available on the stock market (COIN). It has fewer pairs than Binance but still has significant volumes, despite not working in many countries around the world. The great thing about Coinbase is that with every new listing it manages to raise a token to stratospheric levels. This is because being listed on Coinbase is one of the highest privileges in the crypto world. Personally, I have used it less than Binance and I consider it not as good, but I cannot lie and say that it is inferior. Coinbase has been around for years and is here to stay, so it’s a great alternative to Binance.
Kraken – We decided to put Kraken in third place because it is one of the longest-running centralized exchanges. Many other exchanges are better, but Kraken puts security first and is used by a lot of whales, which means that liquidity is never an issue. There may not be as many pairs as you will find on other exchanges, but if you are a strong player with lots of bitcoin, ethereum or top 100 tokens, Kraken is certainly for you! Definitely worth a try!
Crypto.com – A project that we love from the bottom of our hearts and the project that we consider to be the absolute best in marketing. There isn’t a crypto site in the world that doesn’t have at least one banner or advertising button leading to Crypto.com! Definitely an exchange that helps a lot with crypto adoption and also offers a lot of pairs and unprecedented liquidity. On top of that, they offer the best crypto debit cards, so a complete package for any crypto investor!
BitFinex – An exchange that has always been in the top 3 worldwide but has lost a lot of users lately due to a lack of liquidity on smaller pairs and a mobile app that has never been optimized. However, it remains a favorite of whales with lots of bitcoin as it is one of the most liquid exchanges for bitcoin pairs. It should be added that it is also the exchange that created Tether (USDT), one of the most important assets in the crypto world. This is something that cannot be overlooked and we prefer to keep Bitfinex always in our top 5.
KuCoin – An app very similar to Binance that we would like to recommend because of the very high number of Pairs available. The tokens available on KuCoin are not found anywhere else, so it’s a great place to do some higher risk (and perhaps higher reward) trading. The volumes are very high as are the number of users. It has suffered a hack before but has already fixed the problem, refunding those who were harmed. Unfortunately hacks are normal when you have a high-quality project, so we cannot condemn an exchange for this.
Other quality exchanges are Bittrex, Gemini, Huobi and Gate.io.
You should avoid HITBTC like hell, it’s a borderline SCAM exchange that will try anything to rip people off. I have had nightmare experiences with them and I will never recommend them to anyone. Just take a look on Reddit to see how many users are ripped off by HITBTC on a daily basis.