Are you looking to trade Bitcoin Options? Are you interested in finding a Crypto Options broker that will take Bitcoin deposits as well as pay you in Bitcoin?
These are some questions that we at the Trading Club get quite often from prospective members.
They are drawn to the allure of trading the crypto currency and handling their transactions safely and securely.
This is why we have decided to take a look at the current Binary Options landscape and locate the most reliable Crypto Options brokers.
In the below table, we have a number of Bitcoin Options brokers who are able to provide either Bitcoin as a tradable asset or a means to fund your account.
Why Bitcoin Options?
There are numerous reasons why people would want to trade Bitcoin Binary Options. One of the most obvious is the return that a trader can generate when trading the crypto currency.
As most Binary Options traders can tell you, there are a number of factors that impact on the price of a binary option. One of the biggest drivers of this is the volatility in the underlying asset.
Indeed, the more volatile the asset, the price swings in and out of the money and hence the more chance there is that the trader can make an outsized return on a trade.
For those who follow Bitcoin, they know how volatile it can be. From spiking above the price of gold in February 2017, to falling over $300 in the same day, it really is quite unique.
Although there are countless cases for making an investment in Bitcoin, this volatility is most beneficial to the trader. Taking an option with a relatively short time frame and close to the strike could yield tremendous gains.
Why are Bitcoins so Volatile?
Taking a look at the image below of the 30 day realised volatility of Bitcoin compared to that of the EUR/USD pair gives you a slight indication of just how volatile the crypto-currency is. In fact, there have been a number of occasions when it has breached the 15% standard deviation level.
Bitcoin is a volatile currency for a number of reasons. The first and most important is its status as a “safe haven” asset. Similar to gold, it swings wildly given any macroeconomic uncertainty. It is also seen as a dollar hedge. It is for this reason that Bitcoin will move excessively in times of macroeconomic instability.
Bitcoin is also a currency that is heavily traded by citizens of countries with strict exchange controls. Chief amoung these is China. China accounts for slightly more than 90% of the Bitcoin trading volume. Hence, Bitcoin is often tied to any movements that impact on the Chinese market such as announcements about Yuan restrictions etc.
Bitcoin is also volatile because of the limited supply of Bitcoin. Currently, the global supply of Bitcoin is approximately $20 billion. Compare this to the global supply of a currency like the US dollar of $3.8 trillion one can see that it is still minute. Moreover, no government or institution can impact on the total supply of Bitcoin on the market. This is because of reasons giving below. Due to this limited supply, Bitcoin is heavily driven by imbalances in supply and demand.
Funding an account with Bitcoin
Another benefit of Bitcoin is that you can choose to fund your Binary Option account with it. In fact, an increasing number of consumers and online retailers have decided to offer Bitcoin as a method of payment. This is due to a few factors.
Firstly, transacting with Bitcoin is relatively cheap compared to traditional payment processors. This is because there is no middle man or financial institution. Money is sent directly to the wallet of the seller. Another reason why Bitcoin is a favourable purchasing method is the relative security of the transaction. All of the transactions are recorded in the Blockchain and are hence public record.
For traders who want to fund their accounts with Bitcoin, it could also allow for a certain degree of anonymity. Given that defrauding a Bitcoin transaction can’t be done, brokers will not require a client to provide their identification documents. The client can therefore feel safe knowing that they will not have to hand over sensitive information.
Of course, this depends on the type of broker. Many brokers prefer to Know their Clients (KYC) as it is usually required for compliance reasons. In a similar fashion, if you were able to fund your account in Bitcoin, some may want to withdraw their funds in Bitcoin.
As is the case with funding, the transaction is usually quite effortless, fast, cheap and is recorded in the public blockchain.
What is a CryptoCurrency?
For those of you who are new to crypto currency, a limited introduction to the fundamentals underpinning a crypto currency such as Bitcoin is required. Quite simply, a crypto currency is a cryptographically signed record of a transaction in a public ledger. In the case of Bitcoin, the public ledger is called the “blockchain” and it contains all the records of Bitcoin transactions going back to the beginning of time.
In essence, this means that Bitcoin is not even a physical asset nor digital asset for that matter. It is a record of a transfer of value or transaction. Technically what is happening when you are sending some Bitcoin, the transaction is being broadcast to the Bitcoin network and being placed on the blockchain. In order for the transaction to be authenticated, it has to be digitally signed by computers on the network called “miners”.
Solving these transaction chains require the miners cracking mathematical functions or “proofs of work”. Once they have solved the mathematical function, they are rewarded with Bitcoin. Once your transaction has been logged onto the blockchain and authenticated, it remains there for eternity.
The real genius of Bitcoin is the security and money supply of the system. Given that all transactions are linked via the blockchain, no one can “fake” a transaction as it would be immediately void. Similarly, the difficulty of solving a Bitcoin transaction or “hash function” increases steadily with time. This implies that it becomes harder and harder to produce Bitcoin and hence limits supply.
It is for this reason that many people see it as a favourable alternative to Fiat currency. There is no central bank issuing authority and there is no bank required as an intermediary. Individuals can transact in a decentralised manner across the globe with relative ease.
What are Altcoins?
When it comes to crypto options and other cryptocurrencies, Bitcoin is usually the first coin that comes to mind. Yet, there are a range of other cryptocurrencies that either compete with or complement Bitcoin. These are called “Altcoins” or Alternative coins. They have grown in earnest over the past 4 years as more people have seen the success of Bticoin can have attempted to replicate it.
Some of these Altcoins are even decedents of Bitcoin that came via something called a hardfork. This is a technical term for a split the blockchain of a particular cryptocurrency. Currently, there are at least 5 different forks from Bitcoin that are Altcoins. Yet, these are a mere fraction of all the Altcoins that are available to trade.
There are hundreds of different crytpocurrencies that the option trader can trade and many more that are available only as a physical purchase. Below we will go over a list of some of the most well-known and traded Altcoins on the market.
One of the most notable and well known Altcoins is Ethereuem (Ether). This was a completely new cryptocurrency that was created in via an initial coin raise back in 2014 by the Ethereum foundation. Although Ethereuem was a cryptocurrency, it was fundamentally different from Bitcoin in a number of ways. It was developed not just to be a decentralised crytpocurrency but was developed in order to facilitate the creation of decentralised applications. These “Dapps” are built on the Ethereum blockchain and are run on this amorphous ethereum “virtual machine”. This is also the manner in which most of the new blockchain start-ups are raising funding these days through Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs). Ethereuem is a really volatile altcoin and has climbed by over 700% this year already. Most crypto option brokers will offer Ethereum as an asset to trade.
Bitcoin cash was one of those crypto assets that came about because of a split in the Bitcoin blockchain. The Bitcoin cash developers decided to split from the main chain because of disagreement among the participants about the best way to scale the Bitcoin network. The “core” developer team behind Bitcoin thought that the size of the Blockchain “blocks” were not to be increased. This was creating issues with really low transaction speeds. Therefore, another group of developers decided to “hardfork” from the current Bitcoin chain and create a cryptocurrency that had a blocksize limit that was 8 times greater than Bitcoin. The result of that was the creation of Bitcoin cash.
Ripple is an interesting crypto token as it is not fully decentralised. Yet, it is one of the only cryptocurrencies that has a full use case and is currently being used by a number of banks all over the world. Ripple wants to change the way we send money overseas thanks to the help of its Ripple protocol and ledger. Banks will use the Ripple tokens as a means to send money from one corner of the world to another in a relatively short period of time. The goal of Ripple is to usurp the Swift banking confirmation system. Ripple trades under XRP and has had a great deal of press lately.
Litecoin has often been called the “silver” to Bitcoin’s gold. This is because it is similar to Bitcoin in many respects but differs in the way it implements transactions. Also, the hashing algorithms that are used by Litecoin are that much less resistant to conglomerate mining operations from using their specialised equipment to out mine normal users. Litecoin can still be mined by those people who have home mining operations.
Monero is an interesting cryptocurrency asset as it uses revolutionary cryptographic technology to keep transactions on the network completely private. Many people are under the impression that Bitcoin transctions are private which is not entirely true. Important information of the transaction can be seen on the Blockchain (which is stored forever). Monero uses technology that is able to obfuscate information about the transaction including address and amount. Monero has also had an amazing run over the past two years since it was forked. It has increased by up to 100x.
Another Crypto option that has garnered impressive growth and is currently in the top 5 of all cryptocurrencies is Dash. It also has in built mixing characteristics which means that the transactions are semi hidden. This means it is hence also quite private. Dash also has a payment protocol that was built into it called “InstantX” which is able to facilitate payments in under 4 seconds. This compares to the sometimes 10 minutes or more that it currently takes on the Bitcoin network. The Dash coin is also used by many merchants around the world for these purposes.
Irrespective of the crypto option that you decide to trade, you should make certain that you have understand the fundamentals and technicals of said cryptocurrency. Crypto options can be traded with many of the technical indicators that are used in the Forex and Equity markets. Hence, charting strategies such as the MACD Strategy or candlestick indicators can be used with great effect in these markets.
You also have to be aware of the fundamental factors which will impact the crypto options in a particular market. For example, news around partnership announcements or potential adoption by an established company will impact on the price of the coin. Moreover, you have the constant sagas that arise when the crytocurrency goes through a hardfork. There is always constant volatility around these events.
Whatever strategy you choose to trade cryptocurrency options, be sure to use effective money management strategies. Remember, these are lucrative yet risky markets and you should never get carried away when things are not going your way.