Huobi is a cryptocurrency exchange based in Beijing, China, founded in September 2013 by Leon Li. The company is one of the largest Chinese exchange platforms, as it focuses, mainly on the Chinese market.
As of February 25, 2014, Huobi claims to have reached a record amount of 380,000 BTC daily trading volume. Even though the company takes pride in being one of the “Big Three” exchanges in the world, it has been accused of faking its trading volumes many times, but these claims were never proven.
The exchange owns a trading platform BitYes, which is focused on international traders and offers trading services in LTC/USD, and BTC/USD pairs.
On Huobi.com, the verification process is somewhat more demanding than average exchange site. The website is in Chinese and directed at Chinese traders, but the foreigners can register and trade on the platform as well.
Users will be demanded to verify an email address immediately after registering and providing personal info. Following the completion of email verification, the website asks for a confirmation of user’s real name.
It’s essential that the name provided by the user is the same as the name of bank account user wants to link to the Huobi account. This name verification step is especially important for the foreigners. It is common for bank employees in China to make spelling errors when it comes to the names of foreigners or put the names in the wrong order. To make transfers between Huobi and the bank, the name needs to match on both accounts.
After the verification of name, the exchange demands users undergo nationality verification. Users can select a country from a drop-down menu. A passport is chosen automatically for foreigners. However, Chinese residents have more options, which include:
- Chinese ID card
- Military Officer Certificate
- Chinese mainland driving license
- Social insurance number
The user has to submit a picture taken with the government-issued document, and a snapshot of the latest three deposit transactions.
After completing all these steps, mobile verification is required.
The exchange accepts two FIAT currencies, namely Chinese Yuan (CNY) and US dollar (USD). It also accepts two digital coins, which are Bitcoin (BTC) and Litecoin (LTC).
The Huobi trading platform offers the following order types: Market order, Limit order and Stop Limit order. Apart from that, there is margin trading in both BTC and LTC with up to 5x leverage and a 24-hours fee of 0.1 percent.
The most interesting functionality of the platform is the Flash Trade function which includes order book, chart index, and market chart. The Flash Trade offers real-time trading, particularly in the times of high volatility. The Huobi exchange does not support futures trading and derivatives.
The interface is well designed, and it’s relatively straightforward to use. It is rendered in two languages– English and Chinese, but the website is mainly in Chinese and only partially translated into English. Therefore, foreigners may still find it difficult to use.
The trading platform is web-based and is fast and responsive, which is of particular relevance to the exchanges with high liquidity such as Huobi.
Huobi’s trading platform has an Android and iOS app for users to access on their mobile devices.
Houobi’s fee schedule is determined by the Fiat currency on which the user decides to trade.
For US dollar trading, the maker fee is 0.1 percent of the traded amount. The taker fee for volumes traded in the last 30 days is:
- below 50 BTC – 0.2 percent
- over 50 BTC – 0.18 percent
- over 200 BTC – 0.16 percent
- over 600 BTC – 0.14 percent
- over 1500 BTC – 0.12 percent
- over 5000 BTC – 0.10 percent
- over 10000 BTC – 0.08 percent
Chinese Yuan trading has a flat fee 0f 0.2 percent of the traded amount. The exchange ended the no-fee policy in January of 2017 to limit influence on the market and increase liquidity.
Deposits and Withdrawals
Deposits made in Chinese Yuan do not incur any fees. The following schedule determines fees incurred by deposits in US dollars:
- International Wire Transfer – 1 percent of the amount (maximum amount transferable – $150,000)
- OKPAY – 1.5 percent of the amount
Withdrawals in US dollars:
- International Wire Transfer – 1 percent of the amount (minimum fee 33 dollars)
- OKPAY – 0.5 percent of the amount
Fees on Chinese Yuan withdrawals are charged in accordance with the levels. Each level is reached by gathering the specified number of points. The Points are gathered through trading.
VIP0 – 0 points – 0.50 percent
VIP1 – 10000 points – 0.45 percent
VIP2 – 100000 points – 0.40 percent
VIP3 – 300000 points – 0.38 percent
VIP4 – 500000 points – 0.35 percent
VIP5 – 1000000 points – 0.30 percent
VIP6 – Paid Service – 0.30 percent
Cryptocurrency withdrawals incur a fee of 0.0001 BTC and 0.001 LTC respectively.
Is Huobi Safe?
Regarding security, Huobi has invested a lot and even passed many third-party tests. It offers 2FA (Two-factor authentication), email and SMS notifications, as well as PGP encryption for emails. More than 98 percent of the customer funds are stored in the multi-sig cold wallet, which outputs are confined to Huobi’s hot wallet. The wallets are observed 24/7 so that the staff could quickly reach in case of a security breach. Huobi experienced a hack in the past, but no client assets were stolen.The largest Chinese exchange is unquestionably a great place for experienced Asian traders. It is a fact that Huobi is one of the best Asian Bitcoin exchanges. Everything else is a matter of choice.