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The best Tezos Wallets

The best Tezos Wallets
Tezos is a decentralized blockchain that simplifies formal verification, a method that mathematically proves the accuracy of the code controlling transactions. The Tezos blockchain has its own cryptocurrency called Tezos (XTZ), a cryptocurrency with two main functions – a self-administration system and the ability to form launch contracts using its own programming language – Michelson.
If you decide to convert your fiat savings into Tezos or exchange other cryptocurrencies for XTZ, you may have to make a choice among reliable wallets for this. In this article we will look into the best Tezos Wallets so that can help you understand them better.

Hardware Wallets

Hardware wallets are not liable to spam, viruses, phishing attacks, or malicious of the system. Moreover, they provide a high degree of protection to the private keys. Below is the list of hardware wallets that can be used for XTZ.
https://preview.redd.it/j79t9vbgeth31.jpg?width=800&format=pjpg&auto=webp&s=d828387479fc4a2efed4fc857eb9bdf03f9878e9
  • Ledger Nano S
Nano S is a hard wallet from the product line of Ledger, a French manufacturer company. As all other Ledger products, Nano S traditionally looks like a USB flash drive. But this time, you will need to use the USB cable that comes with the wallet to connect to a computer. Ledger Nano S has a chip that is similar with chips on bank cards or biometric passports. Your private key is stored in an isolated environment and is effectively protected. Ledger Nano S also has a screen on it where you can see each transaction made. In case you lose your Nano S wallet, the account can be easily restored on any other Ledger device. Ledger Nano S supports over 20 cryptocurrencies including Tezos (XTZ).
  • Trezor Model T
Trezor T is the flagship model from the well-known Czech manufacturer SatoshiLabs. Model T has a color Touch-Screen display, an SD port and a quantity of supported coins – XTZ is among those coins. When Trezor T is not connected to the computer, it turns off and disconnects from the Internet. Thus, user funds are stored on the device beyond the reach of attackers. Trezor hardware case is ultrasonically soldered, making it difficult to be restored after being damaged.

Web Wallets

Web wallets can be a simple way to get started investing in cryptocurrency. All web wallets can be used right from a browser without the need of downloading software. Beyond that, many of web wallets offer free mobile apps.
  • TezBox Wallet
TezBox was the first GUI released for Tezos. The wallet was developed by the Tezos community and released during the ICO period. TezBox is available for web, desktop and mobile wallets with its user-friendly interface. Users may be assured that all private keys will be stored on their devices safely due to the secured wallet interface. TexBox is the first wallet integrated with hardware wallets Trezor and Ledger Nano S that gives it the increased security.

https://preview.redd.it/zmnx9fwpeth31.png?width=1696&format=png&auto=webp&s=d926f570fb736dd6fcd338fae270cdcfebad9654
  • Guarda Wallet
Guarda Wallet is available as a Web, Mobile and Desktop Wallet and a Chrome extension. It supports more than 40 coins and 10,000 tokens as well as XTZ. The web wallet enables to access cryptocurrency from any modern browser, the website itself looks presentable and made convenient to use. Using the mobile wallet, you can create a new wallet or import an existing one. Besides the common functions such as storage, deposit/withdrawal of cryptocurrency, users can instantly buy the exact amount of cryptocurrency using a bank card or exchange coins and tokens.
  • Magnum Wallet
While Magnum is a multi-asset wallet, one of the best known assets it supports is Tezos (XTZ). Being a light wallet, you do not need to download the full blockchain of any of the cryptocurrencies it works with. The wallet does not keep users’ personal information. As Magnum is a web wallet, it has the extra benefit of being available for nearly any platform, easy of access from any kind of device with an internet browser. Magnum wallet also supports Ledger devices so those can be easily linked to the app.

Mobile Wallets

Mobile wallets are used on your smartphone via an app. Similar to Apple or Google Pay, you can use mobile wallets when shopping in physical shops as cryptocurrencies become more popular and acceptable. Mobile wallets may be safer compared to online wallets and also be easy to use on the go.
  • Trust Wallet
Trust is a wallet for tokens of ERC20 standard, tooled for mobile devices. It offers simple installation and affordable feature set, that does not require additional user skills and abilities. Trust Wallet and Binance are working on new features, including market monitoring, user networks, test networks, and deep integration with the Binance infrastructure. Trust Wallet already supports Tezos as well as other digital currencies.
https://preview.redd.it/ckrma5aueth31.png?width=1400&format=png&auto=webp&s=f37213bf83c82028b97837545536c353664a8368
  • AirGap Wallet
AirGap is a wallet, that allows you to keep your cryptocurrency securely on your mobile. AirGap is a system with two device access: you can use your old mobile device as a hardware wallet using the AirGap Vault app to keep the private key there; while your working smartphone will have the wallet itself. The connection occurs with QR codes, this ensures a genuine one-way communication between AirGap Wallet and AirGap Vault. This implies that no private information ever leaves the air-gapped old phone. Besides Tezos, AirGap supports diverse amount of cryptocurrencies.
  • Tezos.Blue Wallet
In spite of being a lightweight wallet, Tezos.Blue does not scant on security or its features. It is an original app and that is why it gets strong protection straight from the operating system. Using the Tezos.Blue you will have actual updates from the network for a truly live operational comfort. Tezos.Blue is also available in a desktop version. Tezos.Blue is also available in a desktop version.

Desktop Wallets

Desktop wallet can be downloaded and installed on a computer. Desktop wallets may be safer if your computer is not, or more preferably, has never used the Internet connection. Desktop Wallets are perfect for storing large amounts of crypto that you don’t want to use on an everyday basis.
  • Atomic Wallet
Atomic is a convenient, easy to use and safe cryptocurrency wallet, that receives the preferences of many users around the world. It is a decentralized multicurrency wallet that is known in the crypto community for supporting more than 500 cryptocurrencies including Tezos. The primary goal of Atomic Wallet is not just to store cryptocurrency, but also to create a strong ecosystem with many functions.

https://preview.redd.it/apv4gpe0fth31.png?width=1686&format=png&auto=webp&s=dc5602c0eda220594b427c0b42923b8bacd727ae
  • Atomix HD Tezos Wallet
HD wallets (hierarchical deterministic wallet) are the wallets that use a single 12 or 18-word mnemonic phrase that is used to identify following addresses and private keys in a wallet software. Atomix is HD wallet that supports Tezos, it merges benefits of decentralized and centralized exchanges. With Atomix, all private keys are kept encoded on the computer. No identity verification or registration is required to use the wallet.
  • Simplestaking
Simplestaking is Tezos focused wallet being a web app and desktop app with support for hardware wallet Trezor Model T. The wallet is developed using NgRx state management and Angular framework.
  • Galleon Tezos Wallet (Tezori)
Galleon is a smart open source wallet for XTZ that supports both hardware and software wallets on Windows, Linux and Mac. It was developed by Cryptonomic and funded by the Tezos Foundation.
  • Tezos CLI Wallet
The Tezos CLI wallet can be used by those users who have some coding understanding while it requires the use of command lines. Tezos has mentioned the wallet on its website and has been audited by an independent external security inspector. As the Tezos CLI needs some level of command line knowledge, it can be quite difficult to use.

How to keep your wallet safe

A cryptocurrency wallet can be regarded as a regular wallet with money, but it has advanced features, which increases the level of risk. Simple rules will help prevent the loss of your own savings:
  1. Do not store large amounts for long periods on wallets that do not provide full control. It is better to store large amounts for a long time only in wallets that provide full control over the private key and, accordingly, over digital assets. This will help protect your coins against fraud and cyber attacks.
  2. Encrypt information and back up private keys. In case of reinstalling the PC or the occurrence of force majeure situations, this will help to restore access to the wallet quickly.
  3. Store secret keys on an offline device. It is preferable to use a platform that is not accessible for hacking via the Internet.
  4. Use reliable antivirus software and update it regularly. This will prevent the leakage of personal data that hackers can use to crack passwords.
  5. Register several types of wallets. It will allow you to distribute your funds and use the most suitable wallet depending on the situation.
If you use your Tezos wallet wisely and do not neglect the precautions, the risk of funds loss will be minimized.

Feel free to follow our updates and news on Twitter, Facebook, Telegram and BitcoinTalk. Read what the customers say about SimpleSwap on Trustpilot. Don’t hesitate to contact us with any questions you may have via [[email protected]](mailto:[email protected]).
submitted by SimpleSwapExchange to tezos [link] [comments]

The best Tezos Wallets

The best Tezos Wallets
Tezos is a decentralized blockchain that simplifies formal verification, a method that mathematically proves the accuracy of the code controlling transactions. The Tezos blockchain has its own cryptocurrency called Tezos (XTZ), a cryptocurrency with two main functions – a self-administration system and the ability to form launch contracts using its own programming language – Michelson.
If you decide to convert your fiat savings into Tezos or exchange other cryptocurrencies for XTZ, you may have to make a choice among reliable wallets for this. In this article we will look into the best Tezos Wallets so that can help you understand them better.

Hardware Wallets

Hardware wallets are not liable to spam, viruses, phishing attacks, or malicious of the system. Moreover, they provide a high degree of protection to the private keys. Below is the list of hardware wallets that can be used for XTZ.
https://preview.redd.it/bzhyno3fs7i31.jpg?width=800&format=pjpg&auto=webp&s=bf2ff218b400ad3281572ff0b3a22920192b703c

  • Ledger Nano S
Nano S is a hard wallet from the product line of Ledger, a French manufacturer company. As all other Ledger products, Nano S traditionally looks like a USB flash drive. But this time, you will need to use the USB cable that comes with the wallet to connect to a computer. Ledger Nano S has a chip that is similar with chips on bank cards or biometric passports. Your private key is stored in an isolated environment and is effectively protected. Ledger Nano S also has a screen on it where you can see each transaction made. In case you lose your Nano S wallet, the account can be easily restored on any other Ledger device. Ledger Nano S supports over 20 cryptocurrencies including Tezos (XTZ).
  • Trezor Model T
Trezor T is the flagship model from the well-known Czech manufacturer SatoshiLabs. Model T has a color Touch-Screen display, an SD port and a quantity of supported coins – XTZ is among those coins. When Trezor T is not connected to the computer, it turns off and disconnects from the Internet. Thus, user funds are stored on the device beyond the reach of attackers. Trezor hardware case is ultrasonically soldered, making it difficult to be restored after being damaged.

Web Wallets

Web wallets can be a simple way to get started investing in cryptocurrency. All web wallets can be used right from a browser without the need of downloading software. Beyond that, many of web wallets offer free mobile apps.
  • TezBox Wallet
TezBox was the first GUI released for Tezos. The wallet was developed by the Tezos community and released during the ICO period. TezBox is available for web, desktop and mobile wallets with its user-friendly interface. Users may be assured that all private keys will be stored on their devices safely due to the secured wallet interface. TexBox is the first wallet integrated with hardware wallets Trezor and Ledger Nano S that gives it the increased security.
https://preview.redd.it/jtj36c6ls7i31.png?width=1696&format=png&auto=webp&s=a3f31dc9676be5f708911ae8cdb9bf96d8ec0fad

  • Guarda Wallet
Guarda Wallet is available as a Web, Mobile and Desktop Wallet and a Chrome extension. It supports more than 40 coins and 10,000 tokens as well as XTZ. The web wallet enables to access cryptocurrency from any modern browser, the website itself looks presentable and made convenient to use. Using the mobile wallet, you can create a new wallet or import an existing one. Besides the common functions such as storage, deposit/withdrawal of cryptocurrency, users can instantly buy the exact amount of cryptocurrency using a bank card or exchange coins and tokens.
  • Magnum Wallet
While Magnum is a multi-asset wallet, one of the best known assets it supports is Tezos (XTZ). Being a light wallet, you do not need to download the full blockchain of any of the cryptocurrencies it works with. The wallet does not keep users’ personal information. As Magnum is a web wallet, it has the extra benefit of being available for nearly any platform, easy of access from any kind of device with an internet browser. Magnum wallet also supports Ledger devices so those can be easily linked to the app.

Mobile Wallets

Mobile wallets are used on your smartphone via an app. Similar to Apple or Google Pay, you can use mobile wallets when shopping in physical shops as cryptocurrencies become more popular and acceptable. Mobile wallets may be safer compared to online wallets and also be easy to use on the go.
  • Trust Wallet
Trust is a wallet for tokens of ERC20 standard, tooled for mobile devices. It offers simple installation and affordable feature set, that does not require additional user skills and abilities. Trust Wallet and Binance are working on new features, including market monitoring, user networks, test networks, and deep integration with the Binance infrastructure. Trust Wallet already supports Tezos as well as other digital currencies.
https://preview.redd.it/n39ltpjns7i31.png?width=1400&format=png&auto=webp&s=1ded201e4b53b02e842fcf0fb09c46a40614f16d

  • AirGap Wallet
AirGap is a wallet, that allows you to keep your cryptocurrency securely on your mobile. AirGap is a system with two device access: you can use your old mobile device as a hardware wallet using the AirGap Vault app to keep the private key there; while your working smartphone will have the wallet itself. The connection occurs with QR codes, this ensures a genuine one-way communication between AirGap Wallet and AirGap Vault. This implies that no private information ever leaves the air-gapped old phone. Besides Tezos, AirGap supports diverse amount of cryptocurrencies.
  • Tezos.Blue Wallet
In spite of being a lightweight wallet, Tezos.Blue does not scant on security or its features. It is an original app and that is why it gets strong protection straight from the operating system. Using the Tezos.Blue you will have actual updates from the network for a truly live operational comfort. Tezos.Blue is also available in a desktop version. Tezos.Blue is also available in a desktop version.

Desktop Wallets

Desktop wallet can be downloaded and installed on a computer. Desktop wallets may be safer if your computer is not, or more preferably, has never used the Internet connection. Desktop Wallets are perfect for storing large amounts of crypto that you don’t want to use on an everyday basis.
  • Atomic Wallet
Atomic is a convenient, easy to use and safe cryptocurrency wallet, that receives the preferences of many users around the world. It is a decentralized multicurrency wallet that is known in the crypto community for supporting more than 500 cryptocurrencies including Tezos. The primary goal of Atomic Wallet is not just to store cryptocurrency, but also to create a strong ecosystem with many functions.
https://preview.redd.it/ycxqtbups7i31.png?width=1686&format=png&auto=webp&s=27f3f8a0d3074a55eb81306e9a64e289aafdde3f

  • Atomix HD Tezos Wallet
HD wallets (hierarchical deterministic wallet) are the wallets that use a single 12 or 18-word mnemonic phrase that is used to identify following addresses and private keys in a wallet software. Atomix is HD wallet that supports Tezos, it merges benefits of decentralized and centralized exchanges. With Atomix, all private keys are kept encoded on the computer. No identity verification or registration is required to use the wallet.
  • Simplestaking
Simplestaking is Tezos focused wallet being a web app and desktop app with support for hardware wallet Trezor Model T. The wallet is developed using NgRx state management and Angular framework.
  • Galleon Tezos Wallet (Tezori)
Galleon is a smart open source wallet for XTZ that supports both hardware and software wallets on Windows, Linux and Mac. It was developed by Cryptonomic and funded by the Tezos Foundation.
  • Tezos CLI Wallet
The Tezos CLI wallet can be used by those users who have some coding understanding while it requires the use of command lines. Tezos has mentioned the wallet on its website and has been audited by an independent external security inspector. As the Tezos CLI needs some level of command line knowledge, it can be quite difficult to use.

How to keep your wallet safe

A cryptocurrency wallet can be regarded as a regular wallet with money, but it has advanced features, which increases the level of risk. Simple rules will help prevent the loss of your own savings:
  1. Do not store large amounts for long periods on wallets that do not provide full control. It is better to store large amounts for a long time only in wallets that provide full control over the private key and, accordingly, over digital assets. This will help protect your coins against fraud and cyber attacks.
  2. Encrypt information and back up private keys. In case of reinstalling the PC or the occurrence of force majeure situations, this will help to restore access to the wallet quickly.
  3. Store secret keys on an offline device. It is preferable to use a platform that is not accessible for hacking via the Internet.
  4. Use reliable antivirus software and update it regularly. This will prevent the leakage of personal data that hackers can use to crack passwords.
  5. Register several types of wallets. It will allow you to distribute your funds and use the most suitable wallet depending on the situation.
If you use your Tezos wallet wisely and do not neglect the precautions, the risk of funds loss will be minimized.


Feel free to follow our updates and news on Twitter, Facebook, Telegram and BitcoinTalk. Read what the customers say about SimpleSwap on Trustpilot. Don’t hesitate to contact us with any questions you may have via [[email protected]](mailto:[email protected]).
submitted by SimpleSwapExchange to tezostrading [link] [comments]

The best Tezos Wallets

The best Tezos Wallets
Tezos is a decentralized blockchain that simplifies formal verification, a method that mathematically proves the accuracy of the code controlling transactions. The Tezos blockchain has its own cryptocurrency called Tezos (XTZ), a cryptocurrency with two main functions – a self-administration system and the ability to form launch contracts using its own programming language – Michelson.
If you decide to convert your fiat savings into Tezos or exchange other cryptocurrencies for XTZ, you may have to make a choice among reliable wallets for this. In this article we will look into the best Tezos Wallets so that can help you understand them better.

Hardware Wallets

Hardware wallets are not liable to spam, viruses, phishing attacks, or malicious of the system. Moreover, they provide a high degree of protection to the private keys. Below is the list of hardware wallets that can be used for XTZ.
https://preview.redd.it/2105of4im7i31.jpg?width=800&format=pjpg&auto=webp&s=5e90ee401c95e7088dfab24cce84ab9c79662773

  • Ledger Nano S
Nano S is a hard wallet from the product line of Ledger, a French manufacturer company. As all other Ledger products, Nano S traditionally looks like a USB flash drive. But this time, you will need to use the USB cable that comes with the wallet to connect to a computer. Ledger Nano S has a chip that is similar with chips on bank cards or biometric passports. Your private key is stored in an isolated environment and is effectively protected. Ledger Nano S also has a screen on it where you can see each transaction made. In case you lose your Nano S wallet, the account can be easily restored on any other Ledger device. Ledger Nano S supports over 20 cryptocurrencies including Tezos (XTZ).
  • Trezor Model T
Trezor T is the flagship model from the well-known Czech manufacturer SatoshiLabs. Model T has a color Touch-Screen display, an SD port and a quantity of supported coins – XTZ is among those coins. When Trezor T is not connected to the computer, it turns off and disconnects from the Internet. Thus, user funds are stored on the device beyond the reach of attackers. Trezor hardware case is ultrasonically soldered, making it difficult to be restored after being damaged.

Web Wallets

Web wallets can be a simple way to get started investing in cryptocurrency. All web wallets can be used right from a browser without the need of downloading software. Beyond that, many of web wallets offer free mobile apps.
  • TezBox Wallet
TezBox was the first GUI released for Tezos. The wallet was developed by the Tezos community and released during the ICO period. TezBox is available for web, desktop and mobile wallets with its user-friendly interface. Users may be assured that all private keys will be stored on their devices safely due to the secured wallet interface. TexBox is the first wallet integrated with hardware wallets Trezor and Ledger Nano S that gives it the increased security.

https://preview.redd.it/7llaor3lm7i31.png?width=1696&format=png&auto=webp&s=b67ea39f001f75788a033f091cc7ace212a486bf
  • Guarda Wallet
Guarda Wallet is available as a Web, Mobile and Desktop Wallet and a Chrome extension. It supports more than 40 coins and 10,000 tokens as well as XTZ. The web wallet enables to access cryptocurrency from any modern browser, the website itself looks presentable and made convenient to use. Using the mobile wallet, you can create a new wallet or import an existing one. Besides the common functions such as storage, deposit/withdrawal of cryptocurrency, users can instantly buy the exact amount of cryptocurrency using a bank card or exchange coins and tokens.
  • Magnum Wallet
While Magnum is a multi-asset wallet, one of the best known assets it supports is Tezos (XTZ). Being a light wallet, you do not need to download the full blockchain of any of the cryptocurrencies it works with. The wallet does not keep users’ personal information. As Magnum is a web wallet, it has the extra benefit of being available for nearly any platform, easy of access from any kind of device with an internet browser. Magnum wallet also supports Ledger devices so those can be easily linked to the app.

Mobile Wallets

Mobile wallets are used on your smartphone via an app. Similar to Apple or Google Pay, you can use mobile wallets when shopping in physical shops as cryptocurrencies become more popular and acceptable. Mobile wallets may be safer compared to online wallets and also be easy to use on the go.
  • Trust Wallet
Trust is a wallet for tokens of ERC20 standard, tooled for mobile devices. It offers simple installation and affordable feature set, that does not require additional user skills and abilities. Trust Wallet and Binance are working on new features, including market monitoring, user networks, test networks, and deep integration with the Binance infrastructure. Trust Wallet already supports Tezos as well as other digital currencies.

https://preview.redd.it/kqm6i1onm7i31.png?width=1400&format=png&auto=webp&s=487a0bdf73fed77f875d5126435f4693bc382974

  • AirGap Wallet
AirGap is a wallet, that allows you to keep your cryptocurrency securely on your mobile. AirGap is a system with two device access: you can use your old mobile device as a hardware wallet using the AirGap Vault app to keep the private key there; while your working smartphone will have the wallet itself. The connection occurs with QR codes, this ensures a genuine one-way communication between AirGap Wallet and AirGap Vault. This implies that no private information ever leaves the air-gapped old phone. Besides Tezos, AirGap supports diverse amount of cryptocurrencies.
  • Tezos.Blue Wallet
In spite of being a lightweight wallet, Tezos.Blue does not scant on security or its features. It is an original app and that is why it gets strong protection straight from the operating system. Using the Tezos.Blue you will have actual updates from the network for a truly live operational comfort. Tezos.Blue is also available in a desktop version. Tezos.Blue is also available in a desktop version.

Desktop Wallets

Desktop wallet can be downloaded and installed on a computer. Desktop wallets may be safer if your computer is not, or more preferably, has never used the Internet connection. Desktop Wallets are perfect for storing large amounts of crypto that you don’t want to use on an everyday basis.
  • Atomic Wallet
Atomic is a convenient, easy to use and safe cryptocurrency wallet, that receives the preferences of many users around the world. It is a decentralized multicurrency wallet that is known in the crypto community for supporting more than 500 cryptocurrencies including Tezos. The primary goal of Atomic Wallet is not just to store cryptocurrency, but also to create a strong ecosystem with many functions.

https://preview.redd.it/m41b7viqm7i31.png?width=1686&format=png&auto=webp&s=c69cb497b09e2fe92f163308f9fb2e54faf59c8f

  • Atomix HD Tezos Wallet
HD wallets (hierarchical deterministic wallet) are the wallets that use a single 12 or 18-word mnemonic phrase that is used to identify following addresses and private keys in a wallet software. Atomix is HD wallet that supports Tezos, it merges benefits of decentralized and centralized exchanges. With Atomix, all private keys are kept encoded on the computer. No identity verification or registration is required to use the wallet.
  • Simplestaking
Simplestaking is Tezos focused wallet being a web app and desktop app with support for hardware wallet Trezor Model T. The wallet is developed using NgRx state management and Angular framework.
  • Galleon Tezos Wallet (Tezori)
Galleon is a smart open source wallet for XTZ that supports both hardware and software wallets on Windows, Linux and Mac. It was developed by Cryptonomic and funded by the Tezos Foundation.
  • Tezos CLI Wallet
The Tezos CLI wallet can be used by those users who have some coding understanding while it requires the use of command lines. Tezos has mentioned the wallet on its website and has been audited by an independent external security inspector. As the Tezos CLI needs some level of command line knowledge, it can be quite difficult to use.

How to keep your wallet safe

A cryptocurrency wallet can be regarded as a regular wallet with money, but it has advanced features, which increases the level of risk. Simple rules will help prevent the loss of your own savings:
  1. Do not store large amounts for long periods on wallets that do not provide full control. It is better to store large amounts for a long time only in wallets that provide full control over the private key and, accordingly, over digital assets. This will help protect your coins against fraud and cyber attacks.
  2. Encrypt information and back up private keys. In case of reinstalling the PC or the occurrence of force majeure situations, this will help to restore access to the wallet quickly.
  3. Store secret keys on an offline device. It is preferable to use a platform that is not accessible for hacking via the Internet.
  4. Use reliable antivirus software and update it regularly. This will prevent the leakage of personal data that hackers can use to crack passwords.
  5. Register several types of wallets. It will allow you to distribute your funds and use the most suitable wallet depending on the situation.
If you use your Tezos wallet wisely and do not neglect the precautions, the risk of funds loss will be minimized.

Feel free to follow our updates and news on Twitter, Facebook, Telegram and BitcoinTalk. Read what the customers say about SimpleSwap on Trustpilot. Don’t hesitate to contact us with any questions you may have via [[email protected]](mailto:[email protected]).
submitted by SimpleSwapExchange to tezostrader [link] [comments]

Crypto and the Latency Arms Race: Crypto Exchanges and the HFT Crowd

Crypto and the Latency Arms Race: Crypto Exchanges and the HFT Crowd


News by Coindesk: Max Boonen
Carrying on from an earlier post about the evolution of high frequency trading (HFT), how it can harm markets and how crypto exchanges are responding, here we focus on the potential longer-term impact on the crypto ecosystem.
First, though, we need to focus on the state of HFT in a broader context.

Conventional markets are adopting anti-latency arbitrage mechanisms

In conventional markets, latency arbitrage has increased toxicity on lit venues and pushed trading volumes over-the-counter or into dark pools. In Europe, dark liquidity has increased in spite of efforts by regulators to clamp down on it. In some markets, regulation has actually contributed to this. Per the SEC:
“Using the Nasdaq market as a proxy, [Regulation] NMS did not seem to succeed in its mission to increase the display of limit orders in the marketplace. We have seen an increase in dark liquidity, smaller trade sizes, similar trading volumes, and a larger number of “small” venues.”
Why is non-lit execution remaining or becoming more successful in spite of its lower transparency? In its 2014 paper, BlackRock came out in favour of dark pools in the context of best execution requirements. It also lamented message congestion and cautioned against increasing tick sizes, features that advantage latency arbitrageurs. (This echoes the comment to CoinDesk of David Weisberger, CEO of Coinroutes, who explained that the tick sizes typical of the crypto market are small and therefore do not put slower traders at much of a disadvantage.)
Major venues now recognize that the speed race threatens their business model in some markets, as it pushes those “slow” market makers with risk-absorbing capacity to provide liquidity to the likes of BlackRock off-exchange. Eurex has responded by implementing anti-latency arbitrage (ALA) mechanisms in options:
“Right now, a lot of liquidity providers need to invest more into technology in order to protect themselves against other, very fast liquidity providers, than they can invest in their pricing for the end client. The end result of this is a certain imbalance, where we have a few very sophisticated liquidity providers that are very active in the order book and then a lot of liquidity providers that have the ability to provide prices to end clients, but are tending to do so more away from the order book”, commented Jonas Ullmann, Eurex’s head of market functionality. Such views are increasingly supported by academic research.
XTX identifies two categories of ALA mechanisms: policy-based and technology-based. Policy-based ALA refers to a venue simply deciding that latency arbitrageurs are not allowed to trade on it. Alternative venues to exchanges (going under various acronyms such as ECN, ATS or MTF) can allow traders to either take or make, but not engage in both activities. Others can purposefully select — and advertise — their mix of market participants, or allow users to trade in separate “rooms” where undesired firms are excluded. The rise of “alternative microstructures” is mostly evidenced in crypto by the surge in electronic OTC trading, where traders can receive better prices than on exchange.
Technology-based ALA encompasses delays, random or deterministic, added to an exchange’s matching engine to reduce the viability of latency arbitrage strategies. The classic example is a speed bump where new orders are delayed by a few milliseconds, but the cancellation of existing orders is not. This lets market makers place fresh quotes at the new prevailing market price without being run over by latency arbitrageurs.
As a practical example, the London Metal Exchange recently announced an eight-millisecond speed bump on some contracts that are prime candidates for latency arbitrageurs due to their similarity to products trading on the much bigger CME in Chicago.
Why 8 milliseconds? First, microwave transmission between Chicago and the US East Coast is 3 milliseconds faster than fibre optic lines. From there, the $250,000 a month Hibernia Express transatlantic cable helps you get to London another 4 milliseconds faster than cheaper alternatives. Add a millisecond for internal latencies such as not using FPGAs and 8 milliseconds is the difference for a liquidity provider between investing tens of millions in speed technology or being priced out of the market by latency arbitrage.
With this in mind, let’s consider what the future holds for crypto.

Crypto exchanges must not forget their retail roots

We learn from conventional markets that liquidity benefits from a diverse base of market makers with risk-absorption capacity.
Some have claimed that the spread compression witnessed in the bitcoin market since 2017 is due to electronification. Instead, I posit that it is greater risk-absorbing capacity and capital allocation that has improved the liquidity of the bitcoin market, not an increase in speed, as in fact being a fast exchange with colocation such as Gemini has not supported higher volumes. Old-timers will remember Coinsetter, a company that, per the Bitcoin Wiki , “was created in 2012, and operates a bitcoin exchange and ECN. Coinsetter’s CSX trading technology enables millisecond trade execution times and offers one of the fastest API data streams in the industry.” The Wiki page should use the past tense as Coinsetter failed to gain traction, was acquired in 2016 and subsequently closed.
Exchanges that invest in scalability and user experience will thrive (BitMEX comes to mind). Crypto exchanges that favour the fastest traders (by reducing jitter, etc.) will find that winner-takes-all latency strategies do not improve liquidity. Furthermore, they risk antagonising the majority of their users, who are naturally suspicious of platforms that sell preferential treatment.
It is baffling that the head of Russia for Huobi vaunted to CoinDesk that: “The option [of co-location] allows [selected clients] to make trades 70 to 100 times faster than other users”. The article notes that Huobi doesn’t charge — but of course, not everyone can sign up.
Contrast this with one of the most successful exchanges today: Binance. It actively discourages some HFT strategies by tracking metrics such as order-to-trade ratios and temporarily blocking users that breach certain limits. Market experts know that Binance remains extremely relevant to price discovery, irrespective of its focus on a less professional user base.
Other exchanges, take heed.
Coinbase closed its entire Chicago office where 30 engineers had worked on a faster matching engine, an exercise that is rumoured to have cost $50mm. After much internal debate, I bet that the company finally realised that it wouldn’t recoup its investment and that its value derived from having onboarded 20 million users, not from upgrading systems that are already fast and reliable by the standards of crypto.
It is also unsurprising that Kraken’s Steve Hunt, a veteran of low-latency torchbearer Jump Trading, commented to CoinDesk that: “We want all customers regardless of size or scale to have equal access to our marketplace”. Experience speaks.
In a recent article on CoinDesk , Matt Trudeau of ErisX points to the lower reliability of cloud-based services compared to dedicated, co-located and cross-connected gateways. That much is true. Web-based technology puts the emphasis on serving the greatest number of users concurrently, not on serving a subset of users deterministically and at the lowest latency possible. That is the point. Crypto might be the only asset class that is accessible directly to end users with a low number of intermediaries, precisely because of the crypto ethos and how the industry evolved. It is cheaper to buy $500 of bitcoin than it is to buy $500 of Microsoft shares.
Trudeau further remarks that official, paid-for co-location is better than what he pejoratively calls “unsanctioned colocation,” the fact that crypto traders can place their servers in the same cloud providers as the exchanges. The fairness argument is dubious: anyone with $50 can set up an Amazon AWS account and run next to the major crypto exchanges, whereas cheap co-location starts at $1,000 a month in the real world. No wonder “speed technology revenues” are estimated at $1 billion for the major U.S. equity exchanges.
For a crypto exchange, to reside in a financial, non-cloud data centre with state-of-the-art network latencies might ironically impair the likelihood of success. The risk is that such an exchange becomes dominated on the taker side by the handful of players that already own or pay for the fastest communication routes between major financial data centres such as Equinix and the CME in Chicago, where bitcoin futures are traded. This might reduce liquidity on the exchange because a significant proportion of the crypto market’s risk-absorption capacity is coming from crypto-centric funds that do not have the scale to operate low-latency strategies, but might make up the bulk of the liquidity on, say, Binance. Such mom-and-pop liquidity providers might therefore shun an exchange that caters to larger players as a priority.

Exchanges risk losing market share to OTC liquidity providers

While voice trading in crypto has run its course, a major contribution to the market’s increase in liquidity circa 2017–2018 was the risk appetite of the original OTC voice desks such as Cumberland Mining and Circle.
Automation really shines in bringing together risk-absorbing capacity tailored to each client (which is impossible on anonymous exchanges) with seamless electronic execution. In contrast, latency-sensitive venues can see liquidity evaporate in periods of stress, as happened to a well-known and otherwise successful exchange on 26 June which saw its bitcoin order book become $1,000 wide for an extended period of time as liquidity providers turned their systems off. The problem is compounded by the general unavailability of credit on cash exchanges, an issue that the OTC market’s settlement model avoids.
As the crypto market matures, the business model of today’s major cash exchanges will come under pressure. In the past decade, the FX market has shown that retail traders benefit from better liquidity when they trade through different channels than institutional speculators. Systematic internalizers demonstrate the same in equities. This fact of life will apply to crypto. Exchanges have to pick a side: either cater to retail (or retail-driven intermediaries) or court HFTs.
Now that an aggregator like Tagomi runs transaction cost analysis for their clients, it will become plainly obvious to investors with medium-term and long-term horizons (i.e. anyone not looking at the next 2 seconds) that their price impact on exchange is worse than against electronic OTC liquidity providers.
Today, exchange fee structures are awkward because they must charge small users a lot to make up for crypto’s exceptionally high compliance and onboarding costs. Onboarding a single, small value user simply does not make sense unless fees are quite elevated. Exchanges end up over-charging large volume traders such as B2C2’s clients, another incentive to switch to OTC execution.
In the alternative, what if crypto exchanges focus on HFT traders? In my opinion, the CME is a much better venue for institutional takers as fees are much lower and conventional trading firms will already be connected to it. My hypothesis is that most exchanges will not be able to compete with the CME for fast traders (after all, the CBOE itself gave up), and must cater to their retail user base instead.
In a future post, we will explore other microstructures beyond all-to-all exchanges and bilateral OTC trading.
Fiber threads image via Shutterstock
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