Risk Warning: Your Capital is at Risk.
In this guide to trading Bitcoin (BTC), we’ll cover how and where you can trade this cryptocurrency. We’ll also show you how to get started trading today with our step-by-step guide and give you a list of regulated brokers and exchanges.
If you’re in a hurry to trade Bitcoin forex, options, CFDs, or other derivatives, consider these top regulated brokers available in :
Disclaimer: Availability subject to regulations.
Between 74-89% of retail investor accounts lose money when trading CFDs.
How Can I Trade Bitcoin (BTC)?
There are several ways you can trade Bitcoin, including:
- Bitcoin exchanges – Buy, sell, trade, or convert Bitcoin into another cryptocurrency or fiat currency.
- Bitcoin forex – Buy CFDs that predict how the value of Bitcoin will move versus other currencies.
- Bitcoin futures – Buy or sell Bitcoin at a later date for a fixed price.
Where Can I Trade Bitcoin?
There are brokers and Bitcoin exchanges around the world, but because the various regulating authorities have differing opinions on what and how Bitcoin should be regulated, you should be careful choosing a trading platform for cryptocurrencies.
Which Countries Allow Bitcoin Trading?
It’s complicated. But, around 170 countries allow (or at least don’t ban) cryptocurrencies:
- Antigua and Barbuda
- Bosnia and Herzegovina
- Burkina Faso
- Côte d’Ivoire
- Cabo Verde
- Central African Republic
- Congo (Congo-Brazzaville)
- Costa Rica
- Czechia (Czech Republic)
- The Democratic Republic of the Congo
- El Salvador
- Equatorial Guinea
- Eswatini (fmr. “Swaziland”)
- Holy See
- Marshall Islands
- Myanmar (formerly Burma)
- New Zealand
- North Korea
- North Macedonia
- Palestine State
- Papua New Guinea
- Saint Kitts and Nevis
- Saint Lucia
- Saint Vincent and the Grenadines
- San Marino
- Sao Tome and Principe
- Sierra Leone
- Solomon Islands
- South Africa
- South Korea
- South Sudan
- Sri Lanka
- Trinidad and Tobago
- United Kingdom
- United States of America*
*Some US states ban cryptocurrencies. (See below.)
Which Countries Ban Bitcoin Trading?
These 25 countries ban or have other legislation against crypto trading.
- Dominican Republic
- Saudi Arabia
- United Arab Emirates
Also note that regulations are quickly changing when it comes to cryptocurrency.
Bottom line: check with your local financial regulatory agencies for the most recent policy changes.
Which US States Allow Bitcoin (BTC) Trading?
Cryptocurrency regulations vary from state to state and are currently in flux.
- District of Columbia
- New Jersey
- New Mexico
- North Dakota
- Northern Mariana Islands
- Rhode Island
- South Carolina
- South Dakota
- United States Minor Outlying Islands
- West Virginia
Although we aim to keep these lists up-to-date, cryptocurrency policies are changing rapidly, so please check with your local regulators for guidance.
How Is Bitcoin Trading Regulated?
The following bodies regulate cryptocurrency brokers or exchanges:
|Australia||Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC)|
|European Union||Cyprus Securities and Exchange Commission (CySEC), Markets in Financial Instruments Directive (MiFID), European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA)|
|Germany||Federal Financial Supervisory Authority (BaFin)|
|Japan||Financial Services Agency (FSA)|
|New Zealand||Financial Markets Authority (FMA)|
|Switzerland||Financial Markets Supervisory Authority (FINMA)|
|United Kingdom||Financial Conduct Authority (FCA)|
|United States||Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN), Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC)|
Regulated Crypto Brokers
The following regulated brokers offer ways to speculate on Bitcoin through derivatives like CFDs (not available in USA) and forex which allow traders in to speculate on the price of Bitcoin without actually owning it.
CFDs are complex instruments and come with a high risk of losing money rapidly due to leverage. Between 74%-89% of retail investor accounts lose money when trading CFDs. You should consider whether you can afford to take the high risk of losing your money.
Please Note: Availability subject to regulations. Cryptocurrency CFDs are not available to UK retail traders.
On exchanges, you can buy and sell Bitcoin outright, but in some cases, you can also convert Bitcoin into fiat currencies or other cryptocurrencies (and vice versa).
You can think of Bitcoin exchanges as platforms that facilitate the meeting of buyers and sellers. Here’s a list of popular Bitcoin exchanges available in that offer Bitcoin and many other cryptocurrencies:
Bitcoin Trading Strategies
We’ve gathered some strategies to keep in mind when trading or exchanging Bitcoin.
- Keep an eye on current trends in the Bitcoin world. Considering how ongoing events may impact the market will help you make more informed decisions.
- Test your strategies with a demo account, if possible. When learning a new strategy, take advantage of your broker’s practice account to see if they might be wise to try with real coins.
Avoid Common Bitcoin Trading Mistakes
- Back up your e-wallet. Even if your broker doesn’t offer an integrated wallet, make sure you back up your Bitcoin digital assets regularly to avoid losing your coins. Security breaches and other issues can easily wipe out what you own. You might also consider setting up cold storage for your Bitcoin.
- Never trade more than you can afford to lose. It’s a cardinal rule of trading, but it also applies to Bitcoin, particularly with CFDs. Most CFD customers lose money. Although leverage can mean big rewards, it can also mean astronomical losses that you’ll have to cover.
- Don’t assume that Bitcoin is forever. The story of the internet — as well as trading — is often rags-to-riches-to-rags again. If you trade cutting-edge digital assets, keep yourself informed about the marketplace daily.
How to Start Trading Bitcoin: A Step-by-Step Guide
This guide will walk you through setting up an account with eToro, which is a broker that offers a crypto exchange where you can trade Bitcoin. eToro also offers Bitcoin CFDs in countries that allow them. CFDS products are not available for US users.
Also note that eToro does NOT offer CFD or real cryptocurrency products for users from the Netherlands.
The eToro website will detect your country of residence and direct you to the appropriate products on its website.
- Click Join Now to create an account with your email address at eToro.com. You’ll also need to provide a username and a password. Agree to the requested conditions and click Create Account to proceed.
- Check your email for a verification message. Click Verify my email and then click Sign in. Click Continue on the Welcome Aboard pop-up to begin filling out your profile.
- Provide your full name, as well as your gender and birthday. The information you provide must match the information on your ID or passport. You’ll also need to provide your address and social security number and confirm whether your country of residence is the same as your birthplace and country of citizenship.
- Fill out your trading profile: Explain what you want to do with any money you earn, your trading timeframe, risk tolerance, conflicts of interest, and financial status (including income and occupation).
- Provide and verify your phone number.
- Agree to the required tax forms. [This step differs by country.]
- Once you’ve completed your profile, you can deposit funds into your account. You’ll need to link your bank account to do so.
Here are some common questions and answers about Bitcoin trading.
Why trade Bitcoin?
Some traders use Bitcoin as a method of diversifying their portfolios. Others like that the cryptocurrency market runs 24/7 since fiat currencies typically run on weekdays only. Be sure you understand all the risks involved before trading Bitcoin.
Important: This is not investment advice. We present a number of common arguments for and against investing in this commodity. Please seek professional advice before making investment decisions.
When can I trade Bitcoin?
You can trade Bitcoin 24/7. No matter where you are in the world, there are crypto exchanges that are active and can facilitate transactions. However, there are certain times of the day when prices are more volatile and some brokers charge overnight fees, so do your research to ensure that you’re making trades at the optimum times.
- Learn more about the history of Bitcoin
- See today’s live Bitcoin price and it’s historical prices
- Learn how to trade Bitcoin Cash, Ripple, Verge, and ZCash.
Credits: Original article written by Katie Horne and Marko Csokasi. Updates and additions in Jan 2021 by the Commodity.com editorial team.