Why is it so hard to choose a cryptocurrency exchange for buying, selling, and trading in Canada? Sure, there are many great crypto exchanges in Canada, and you need the right tool to compare which exchange is best for your needs. Well, there are many options to consider when choosing a bitcoin or cryptocurrency exchange to go with. Some of the key features you will want to look at when choosing an exchange include its compatibility with your existing banking methods, the number of cryptocurrencies offered under the trading area, and safety, security, and support. Today we will take a look at NDAX and the registration process, including ease of use and requirements, and opportunities for trading, buying, and selling. In this article, we look at how to open an account, some of the supported assets, associated fees, perks of the exchange, and other features of the exchange to better guide new users in their quest to find a cryptocurrency exchange.
What is NDAX?
NDAX is the Calgary-based cryptocurrency exchange platform making digital assets accessible to everyone. The world of crypto can be confusing and nuanced, especially if you’re brand new to the space. NDAX has simplified the buying and selling process for crypto-enthusiasts of all experience levels. For the newbies, you get quick access to 26 different cryptocurrencies on an easy-to-use platform. Veteran crypto-traders can take advantage of more advanced features and sophisticated trading tools. NDAX offers something for everyone, making it one of the best crypto exchange platforms in Canada.
Fees to expect on NDAX
Let’s cut right to the chase and talk about fees, one of the most important deciding factors when choosing an exchange platform. One of the best features of the NDAX platform is the low trading fees. They’re one of the least expensive cryptocurrency exchanges out there, charging only a 0.2% transaction fee to buy or sell crypto. That’s great news for beginners and those with less capital.
Other exchanges may advertise free trades, but they nail you on the spread. In the most simple terms, a spread is the difference in price between the sell price of a crypto coin and how much you pay for it; how much crypto you want to buy vs. how much you actually get when the trade settles. Some exchanges will advertise free trading. But that’s not exactly true. Every platform makes money on your trades, some just hide the fee in the spread. NDAX is upfront and transparent about how they price and collect their trading fees. At a 0.2% trading, you’ll pay 0.2% of the value of your trade to the NDAX platform. That means the larger the trade the more you’ll pay, and vice versa.
The NDAX trading fee is great news for beginners starting out with less money, making smaller trades. Their profits won’t take as much of a hit since the fee is proportionate to the size of the trade. It also eliminates frustration and headaches for experienced traders who want to know exactly how much their trades will cost. We love that NDAX is completely transparent about fees so users can make an informed decision.
In fact, they’ve included a fee calculator on their site, so you can see exactly how much a trade will cost before you make it. That’s an incredibly useful feature I haven’t come across on the other exchanges I’ve used. With the fee calculator, I know it’s going to cost me $1 to buy $500 worth of Bitcoin (BTC). I don’t have to wait until after the transaction settles to find out how much BTC I actually end up with.
However, before you can buy any crypto you have to fund your account. There are three ways to add money to your NDAX account, and they’re all free. Withdrawing from your account? That is a different story. NDAX charges a flat rate of $25 to transfer your funds off the platform back to your bank account.
That’s not a big deal for experienced crypto-whales trading large volumes and cashing out big profits. But if you’re a little fish just getting started, that’s actually really expensive. Imagine buying $100 worth of crypto, doubling your money, and walking away with only $74.80 dollars profit after the 0.2% trading fee, and another $25 fee when you cash out to your bank account. But Brian can make a $40,000 trade, double his money, and walk away with $39,895 profit after the 0.2% trading fee and the $25 flat fee to cash out to his bank account. He keeps 99% of his profits and you keep less than 75% of yours. That’s kind of rude.
The NDAX registration process
Opening an account on NDAX is open to people all over the world, and one of the first things you have to do is select your country of residence, then include your first and last name, username, and email address, as well as your password. Once you have confirmed your password, and agreed that you are over 18 and to the terms and conditions, then you can begin your access to the main exchange platform. Once you click the Sign Up button, you will receive an activation email to complete the registration process. Click on the activation link and then you will receive an email that confirms your membership along with a message to verify your identity.
Verifying your NDAX account and Know Your Customer (KYC) information
One of the first things you will have to do once you have registered and logged in is to complete the identification verification step. This involves completing the necessary information that is required in order to open an account with NDAX. It’s is totally normal for regulated cryptocurrency exchanges and shouldn’t be cause for alarm. It’s called Know Your Customer (KYC) information and is required in order for them to be compliant with Canadian financial regulations. However, NDAX is the first exchange I’ve used that asked for my Social Insurance Number (SIN). Providing your SIN is optional, but it definitely weirded me out a little bit.
To open your account, you must fill out information including your first and last name, date of birth, and proof of identification using a driver’s license. You will also need to provide your physical address as a mailing address will not suffice, as box numbers or mailing addresses are not permitted. Providing your Social Insurance Number (SIN) is optional, but may speed the verification process along.
Once you have selected your physical location from an address-finder list, you are then asked a series of questions about why you are opening the account, as well as your employment type, and how you heard about NDAX. After you have entered the additional information, you are given a summary of your data-entered, and then required to verify your phone number through SMS or Call Me feature. Finally, you are sent to the page where you upload your ID and get verified.
If there are any discrepancies in the information, you are sent an email to update the information and it can take an additional 14-days to complete the process. If all the information is correct, verification happens quite quickly, with enablement averaging from automatic to one business day. After verification, you can make your first deposit either with cryptocurrency or from your choice of bank account that uses Canadian funds.
Making your first deposit
After you have registered an account and completed the lengthy verification process, you can begin to fund your account and move onto the trading component of the exchange. You can fund your account by clicking on the Deposit button from the main dashboard. The Dashboard is the central location where you can view your assets, quick trade, view transactions, view portfolio, and check your affiliate link information.
After clicking on the Deposit button, you are redirected to the digital wallet portion of the site, and given the opportunity to top up your wallet using cryptocurrency deposits, and there is a wide range of options, or through a direct bank transfer using Canadian Dollars.
- Bitcoin deposits require 3 confirmations on the blockchain
- Other cryptocurrencies can be instant.
- Interac e-Transfer: 0-30 minutes
- Wire: 0 to 1 business day
After reviewing the deposit options, I chose to go with a Bitcoin deposit because I did not like the fact that you have to upload a receipt and go through other unnecessary options to find your bank as the e-transfer was not working with my bank at the time. I deposited a small amount of Bitcoin (.005), or $250 dollars and it took 6 hours to post to my account because the Bitcoin blockchain was going slower than normal. There are also a range of other cryptocurrencies that people can use to deposit, including Litecoin, Ether, Ripple, EOS, Stellar, Doge, Cardano, Tether, Chainlink, Polkadot, Uniswap, and many more. Once you have deposited, you must increase the security on your account before making a trade by enabling the 2FA, or two factor authentication.
Making the trade on NDAX
Now that you have increased your security, verified your account, and made your first deposit either through an e-transfer, bank wire, or crypto deposit, you can enter the trading area of the platform. One of the first things you will see is a chart showing the price trading history of Bitcoin, as well as a list of other currencies that are open for trading and their current buy and sell prices, as well as the spread between the buy and sell price for each of the currencies. The chart itself offers a range of viewing options and tools along the left side of the chart, and other viewing options and capture options along the topside of the chart. The chart includes the opening price, the high, low, close, and daily gain or loss against the opening price to make you aware of the daily price range. The chart changes depending on your coin selection.
The charting options for each of the currencies on the platform are quite amazing, offering users the chance to dial in on specific elements of a trading period, short ranges, long-term, or other options. The buy orders are in a blue-green color, and the sell orders are in red, indicating the buying and selling over a specific period of time. The ranges for times are 6m, 3m, 1m, 7d, or 1d, as indicated on the lower left portion of the charting area. The price is shown along the right side, while a host of other tools are available on the left side.
One of the unique features of NDAX is the way they illustrate the spread between the price of the buy and sell orders. It is conveniently located above the trading area where the recent trades are shown. In this case, we sold .0009 BTC for CAD at $59,686.16 netting us around $50 CAD. At that point we can withdraw the $50 in funds since we have all the verification and security positions met, either through a bank wire or convert it back to BTC or another coin and hold.
Or, we could place a new order that isn’t at market price, and buy at a lower price where it is good until filled or canceled. Getting to the trading area took a minute to figure out since there was no clear indicator of how to open the order book, but after seeing a small option in the upper right hand corner, you can click on the green or red Tabs, which are Buy or Sell, and open the order book that way. As mentioned, there are plenty of order options, including Market, Limit, Stop, and Stop Limit, where you can set the limit price.
The fees on the trade were relatively low, coming in a $0.10 for the $50 dollar trade, netting it at 0.20% commission. After checking the trading guide in the help section, there are no volume trade bonuses and the commission is a flat rate of 0.20% no matter how big or small the trade is. The exchange is busy, the hundreds of trades happening each hourly interval so the order book is constantly updating and refreshing to give the new price spread and order prices.
For the more advanced trader, you can set up the following trades:
- Limit order
- Stop limit
- Trailing stop market
- Trailing stop limit
- Fill or kill
- Reserve order
More advanced traders will appreciate real-time charts courtesy of TradingView. TradingView lets you use technical analysis tools like measurements, trendlines, and timeframes, to name a few. You can watch the performance of coins, make price predictions, and execute trades based on your analysis, all in one place.
For the crypto whales and institutional investors, you can use their Over The Counter (OTC) service for crypto purchases of $200,000 or more. Speak with an NDAX expert for a seamless execution for all your high-volume trades. Simply fill out a form to connect with an account manager. You’ll get access to fast transactions, a deep liquidity pool, and no slippage.
Besides Bitcoin there is a large number of altcoins available for trading, such as:
From the 26 options available, each are bought and sold with the CAD pair as the main pair.
This is the only option for trading, so if you want to swap between one and another you will always have to trade back into the CAD base pair and then re-trade with the new token you want to swap into. The exchange itself is quite safe and secure, and does not require a trading password like some of the other exchanges, but does require strict verification procedures to open the account. One of the main perks of the exchange is the price buy/sell spread being cleanly illustrated above the order book so it easy to do the math on the price variance.
How does NDAX secure user’s crypto?
Now that you finally have some cryptocurrency for yourself, you may be wondering if it’s safe in your wallet. NDAX is a custodial platform, which means they take care of storing and securing your coins for you. That’s a great feature for beginners.
Opening your own hot or cold wallet, transferring your crypto in and out, and keeping things safe can be overwhelming for crypto greenhorns. You need to be tech-savvy, understand how networks and blockchains work, and never ever lose your wallet seed phrase or kiss your coins goodbye. If you mess up, you’re straight out of luck (SOL). Crypto transactions are irreversible.
Whoa, that’s intense. Luckily, NDAX is partnered with Ledger Vault to secure your digital assets in cold storage. Ledger Vault is a third-party cold storage provider for individuals and institutions. Digital assets in their custody are insured against fraud, hack, internal theft, and hardware malfunction.
Assets that remain on the exchange in a hot wallet are similarly insured and secured with advanced technology called Multi-Party Computation. Multi-Party Computation (MPC) is an industry-recognized form of security that protects cryptocurrency stored in hot wallets from internal and external bad actors. It’s a super complicated process “that requires multiple parties to perform mathematical computations to create distributed shares, which come together to compute a public key and wallet address to store digital assets.”
NDAX has also implemented a Distributed Denial-of-Service-Protection (DDoS) that protects the platform against hacks and other malicious attacks. That platform is run over multiple servers isolated from each other which are monitored around the clock. If one server is attacked, the entire network shuts down to protect the user’s digital assets. I’m getting the vibe NDAX was created by a former CIA agent, but I can’t confirm. If they told me, they’d have to kill me.
For the crypto-maximalists who live by “not your keys, not your crypto.” You can transfer your cryptocurrency off the platform to another crypto wallet. Fees vary by coin and are listed on the website.
Measuring up NDAX: pros and cons
NDAX is a good exchange for beginners who want to learn how to trade and grow into becoming a professional trader as it has all the tools and support mechanisms for growing one’s portfolio into a nice position. However, it does lack some of the trading options that decentralized exchanges like Uniswap and Pancakeswap offer. In this case, it offers 26 trading pairs with the Canadian Dollar on projects that are well established, audited, and vetted.
This makes the risk on the trades less volatile than decentralized exchanges where there has been much less due diligence conducted on the verifiability of the projects and tokens. After making a couple trades from Bitcoin to CAD, and back to Bitcoin, we were able to make a small profit by selling high and buying low, profiting 43 cents in the total $50 spent. The commissions were reasonable, however, they did not offer incentives for high-volume trading other than an over the counter (OTC) service, but did offer an affiliate program for referral income including bonus money and commission from referrals through an affiliate program link:
The affiliate program offers users the opportunity to share their link through social media channels as well as directly using the html link. Some of the channels that you can share to include Reddit, Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin, Telegram, and WhatsApp, so that users can share the word about NDAX through affiliate marketing. This is a great way for the exchange to grow their outreach without spending huge amounts on marketing.
Some of the other pros about the exchange include the opportunity for users to set their notification preferences including the options to screen Newsletters, Products and Promotions, Blog Posts, Transactions, and a ton of other information:
Some of the drawbacks from the NDAX exchange was the extra information collected during the registration process, and lack of additional coin trading pairs. While the 26 pairs that were offered were good, solid, vetted projects, it did lack the riskier projects in the space that some of the more advanced traders like trading into. It did not offer any futures options or derivatives or staking opportunities, but provided a nice clean layout for basic trading for new to intermediate users.
The rigorous KYC is somewhat of a deterrent, but once cleared, trading, depositing, withdrawing, and closing the account was easy enough. NDAX is a good starting exchange for Canadians who want to get in on some solid projects in the cryptocurrency space because it works with Canadian banks and accepts deposits from a wide range of coins. It has a range of preferences so that users can customize their trading experience, and full functionality with most Canadian banks.
The security was standard across the platform, and live agents were available for chat, however, we did not need to use the live chat support as everything was pretty convenient and any questions we did have could be resolved on the blog or by searching the FAQs. Overall, the exchange is solid, safe, secure, and offers some of the best projects for investing in the crypto space. Based on my experience with exchanges, anyone with little to no experience could invest in any of the projects listed on NDAX and have a decent portfolio in the long term, 2 to 4 years, as most of the projects listed on NDAX were chosen based on performance ratings and vetted for quality assurance.