The Global Digital Asset Exchange (GDAX), one of the most famous Bitcoin and cryptocurrency trading exchanges in the world, launched by the Coinbase team in May of 2016, aimed at more advanced users and professional traders.
What Is GDAX?
Global Digital Asset Exchange, abbreviated to GDAX, is one of the world’s most popular places for the exchange of cryptocurrencies. It is run by the same company that owns GDAX is headquartered in San Francisco, Coinbase. GDAX is a regulated US-based exchange, insured and backed by some of the biggest investors in the industry like the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE), Andreessen Horowitz, and Union Square Ventures.
GDAX is a highly liquid exchange that tapped into one of the world’s biggest cryptocurrency networks. It offers advanced trading features, competitive fees, and many deposit options. The exchange gives traders an opportunity to leverage of up to 500:1. GDAX is also known for its low fees with no charge on maker trades.
Ultimately, GDAX offers FDIC insurance to customers. This means, in the case of loss of funds by the exchange, a customer might be entitled to up to $250,000 in remuneration.
Table Of Contents
- 1 What Is GDAX?
- 2 Features Of GDAX
- 3 Getting Started With GDAX
- 4 Trading Digital Currencies On GDAX
- 5 Withdrawal From Your GDAX Account
Features Of GDAX
The following are the most common features of the exchange:
Once you are set up to trade margin through GDAX, the amount of leverage you can access depends on which currency pair you want to trade. Note that GDAX offers margin trading with leverage up to 3x on BTC/USD and ETH/USD pairs, up to a limit of $10,000, or 2x for BTC/EUR pair up to 3,000 EUR, and up to $500 for LTC/USD pair.
If you want to use borrowed money to trade digital currencies through GDAX, you have to enable margin trading at the top of the margin trading panel. For BTC/USD, you can use 3x leverage. What this means for practical purposes is that if the combined value of your BTC and USD balances stands at $1,000, you can purchase or sell $3,000 worth of BTC/USD. For that particular pair, GDAX lets you access up to $10,000 in the margin. However, if you want to trade the BTC/EUR pair, GDAX offers 2x leverage and a funding limit of $ 3,716.22
What makes GDAX one of the best exchanges is its ease of use. GDAX offers an intuitive interface with real-time order books, charting tools, trade history, and a simple order processing tools so that customers can start trading immediately regardless of having previous experience or not.
The interface is well-organized and intuitive, so you will not have any difficulty with finding what you need, whether it is trading history, tools, or help.
Like some other exchanges, GDAX offers a Websocket feed that lets traders easily gain access to real-time market data. The trading API also allows for the development of secure trading bots.
GDAX’s fully featured trading API offers an efficient way for developers to build digital asset trading applications and to offer related functionality. Programmers can build tools to track the market, view trading history, monitor open orders, and more. The followings outline exceptional properties of the GDAX’s API
- A customizable, WebSocket-synced Order Book implementation
- API clients with convenient methods for every API endpoint
- Abstracted interfaces – don't worry about HMAC signing or JSON formatting; the library does it for you
GDAX uses PGP encryption to secure customers transaction. Also, 98% of the customers’ funds are locked in cold storage using multi-sig keys and encryptions. Given that you present identification documents and money during registration and transactions, GDAX assures users of total security of anything in their possession.
There are no fees for making deposits and withdrawals from GDAX account. Only bank fees apply in the case of Wire transfers.
GDAX offers 0% maker fees and taker fees as low as 0.1%. There’s also a rebate of 0.01 percent for the takers at the end of each day.
For users which traded a percentage of that volume in the last 30 days, here is the break down structure of the fee:
|0 percent (~0 BTC)||0.25 percent fee|
|1 percent (~2,114 BTC)||0.24 percent fee|
|2.5 percent (~5,287 BTC)||0.22 percent fee|
|5 percent (~10,574 BTC)||0.19 percent fee|
|10 percent (~21,148 BTC)||0.15 percent fee|
|10 percent (~42,297 BTC)||0.10 percent fee|
Multiple Currency Pairs
Currently, the exchange supports these FIAT currencies:
Also, when it comes to digital currencies, the three matching currencies available are:
- Bitcoin (BTC)
- Ether (ETH)
- Litecoin (LTC)
GDAX offers a wide range of fiat and cryptocurrency pairs, including BTC/USD, ETH/USD, LTC/EUR, LTC/USD, ETH/BTC, LTC/BTC, BTC/GBP, and BTC/EUR, among others.
Depending on the country, available trading pairs can vary. Some of the most popular regions available are:
- US – BTC/USD, ETH/USD, ETH/BTC, LTC/USD, LTC/BTC
- Canada – ETH/BTC, LTC/BTC
- Europe – BTC/EUR, ETH/BTC, LTC/BTC
- The United Kingdom – BTC/GBP, ETH/BTC, LTC/BTC
- Australia – ETH/BTC, LTC/BTC
- Singapore – ETH/BTC, LTC/BTC
The full guide can be found on GDAX support page here.
There are no limits when it comes to trading or deposits. However, there is a limit of 50,000 US dollars per week for withdrawals, but it’s not affected by the verification.
GDAX has a very extensive FAQ page and also offers ticket submission and email support. According to the reviews from majority of the users, the support team usually respond to users’ need within 48 hours.
Getting Started With GDAX
To sign up and create your account with GDAX, follow these steps:
Simply go to www.gdax.com
Note: As a security measure, make sure the Green padlock symbol is shown in your browser address bar, and the protocol is HTTPS, not just HTTP.
Select “Create Account“.
Complete the sign-up form, then click the “Create an account” button
Check your inbox in the mail you provided, and click the verification link sent to your email address.
After verifying your email address, you will be asked to provide a phone number.
Specify whether you would like to create an ‘Individual' or ‘Institutional' account. Depending on the account type selected, you will need to provide information about yourself or your institution.
Users who are already registered on Coinbase don’t have to create an account from scratch and can log in with their Coinbase credentials.
However, GDAX requires two level identity verification for new users. The verification is necessary, and users are not allowed to place deposits or trade before the verification process is completed. So, depending on the location, GDAX has an option for individuals and institutions, whereby you have to fill in the details during registration. The rest of the steps mainly involve verifying your identity and residence, in an effort to increase compliance with the available rules.
The following are the requirements for US users alone:
- Photo of a state ID or driver’s license
- The residential address
- Social Security number (SSN)
For users in the UK:
- A photo of an ID card, driver’s license or Passport.
- The answer to a couple of identity questions
For other users (Singapore, Australia, Canada and European countries):
- A photo of an ID card, driver’s license or Passport.
- Another photo of a different ID document.
Funding your GDAX account
GDAX currently accepts Bank transfers, while Credit/Debit Card deposits can only be made via Coinbase (since Coinbase users also have a free access to a GDAX account). There is no information on the minimum initial deposit on GDAX.
Note that according to the GDAX support, Bank Account deposits made to GDAX are sent via the ACH bank transfer system, which typically takes 3-5 business days (which can be as many as 7-10 calendar days, depending on the timing of weekends and other bank holidays) to complete after initiating a purchase.
There are four basic options for making a deposit, which are:
- Bank Account
- Bank Wire
- Coinbase Account
- BTC/ETH/BCC/LTC Address.
- USING BANK ACCOUNT
- Select the bank account from the “Source” field and enter the amount you want to deposit
- Click the “Deposit funds” button
- USING BANK WIRE
- Give the information they provide to your bank to have a wire transfer Wire transfers are good if you need to send more than your weekly limit.
- USING COINBASE ACCOUNT
- Select the Coinbasewallet you want to transfer from and enter an amount. Note that since BTC was selected in step 2 that it will only show my BTC and USD Note that transfer is instant and free between Coinbase and GDAX!
- Click the “Deposit Funds” button
- USING CRYPTOCURRENCY ADDRESS (In this example, we are considering BTC)
- Go to Gdax.com/trade
- Choose a trading pair with the currency you wish to deposit from the “select product” menu.
- If you want to deposit ETH, select ETH/USD or ETH/BTC.
- Select the Deposit button at the top left.
- Select the “BTC address”, “BCH address”, “ETH address”, or “LTC address” tab.
- Copy the account address shown.
- Open the external wallet you would like to deposit from, and send to the GDAX account address provided.
Trading Digital Currencies On GDAX
Now that you have your fund on the exchange, you’d like to buy BTC (or any digital currency as the case may be) on GDAX.
There are three basic ways to buy/sell a digital asset on GDAX:
- Market Orders: 0.25% fee
This is the simplest order to execute on GDAX and very similar to how you currently buy on Coinbase a buy order at the current market value and have it filled guaranteed. Traders can pay the market price as it changes. You simply put the amount you want to spend, and you place your order. It will immediately fill or give you the Bitcoin at market price.
- Limit Orders: 0% — 0.10% fee
Limit orders are the default way to trade Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies on all exchanges. This is where you are able to place an order onto the order books that show you are willing to buy or sell an asset at a certain price. For example, if ETH is at $560 and you want to buy your in at $540 or lower. You should put in a limit order. If the market moves there and the order can be filled. However, If the market doesn’t move to your limit level, the order won’t go through.
A limit order is 0% fees if you are in the “taker” position, or place your order and let it sit on the order books. If it executes and fills too quickly (you set it close to market price), you will pay a small 0.10% fee as GDAX recognizers you as a “maker.”
- Stop Orders: 0% — 0.10% fee
A stop order is also known as a “stop loss” order, which allows you to minimize risk and stop your loss. This is a strategy requires some charting or technical analysis skills. For example, if the market for BTC is at $8000 and you want to buy at $7600 or lower.
Meaning, in this case, $7600 is the starting price you’re willing to pay. If the market hits $7600, your stop order will trigger a buy at the market price until your specified amount of BTC is purchase. In this case, some of your BTC may come in at $7600, while other parts of the order may come in at $7650, $7700, depending on how volatile the market is while your order is being filled.
- The stop-limit buy order
The combination of the stop and limit buy to create a bracket that you’re comfortable buying in. The stop will specify the price trigger you want to start buying at. This will execute as a market buy– but unlike the simpler stop order, the limit comes in to create a ceiling of how high you’re willing to go. This mitigates your risk in case the market price shifts outside of the threshold you’re comfortable with. As an example, a stop-limit combination of the stop at $320 and the limit at $325 would allow you to execute a buy on $eth only within the range. The advantage of this is that you get a very exact threshold for your price. However, Your order may not be filled if the market does not hit your stop price.
Withdrawal From Your GDAX Account
- Go to the GDAX website and log in
- Choose the product from the drop-down list for the cryptocurrency you want to withdraw. As of this writing GDAX only accepts Bitcoin (BTC), Ethereum (ETH), Bitcoin Cash (BCC), and LiteCoin (LTC). In this example, I want to withdraw Bitcoin, so I chose the BTC/USD pairing.
- Click the “Withdraw” button
GDAX Withdrawal Methods
As described for deposit your funds on the exchange, there are also four available options for withdrawal:
- Bank Account
- Bank Wire
- Coinbase Account
- BTC/ETH/BCC/LTC Address.
- Enter the amount you want to withdraw, choose the bank account with which you want to receive your fund, and enter any required security information by GDAX.
- Click the “Withdraw funds” button
- Contact your bank to get the information needed to have money wired to your account. If you do not have any wire informationon Coinbase it will prompt you to add some as shown below.
- Select the Coinbase wallet you want to transfer from and enter an amount. Note that since a BTCproduct was chosen in step 2, it will only show BTC and USD If an ETH product was selected, the ETH wallet and USD wallet would be options. Therefore, we are choosing BTC in this example. Note that transfers are instant and free between Coinbase and GDAX!
- Click the “Withdraw Funds” button.
- Fill in the “Amount” and “Destination” fields. Destination will be the Bitcoin wallet you are sending funds too.
- Enter any security information requested and then click the “Withdraw funds” button.