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Coinbase vs eToro (2020): Which Exchange Should You Choose?

If you’re looking to enter the world of cryptocurrency trading, no exchange gets recommended more than Coinbase. It has been the most popular exchange in recent years especially for newcomers to the industry. On the other hand, taking your first steps by following seasoned traders can also be a good start, which is something you can do on eToro. This multi-asset brokerage has added crypto to its diverse list of financial assets, promising bigger growth in the blockchain world. Here’s our comparison between Coinbase and eToro to help you choose which one to use.

Coinbase vs eToro Cryptocurrency Exchange Comparison Chart

NameCoinbaseeToro
 Coinbase logoeToro logo
FeesCheck Fees at Coinbase.comCheck Fees at eToro.com
Founded20122006
Cryptocurrencies20+15+
Fiat CurrenciesEUR, USD, GBPEUR, USD, GBP, etc.
Deposit MethodsCryptocurrency, SEPA, Wire TransferCryptocurrency, SEPA, Wire Transfer, PayPal
Margin TradingNo2x
Maker Fee0.5%0.75%
Taker Fee0.5%0.75%
Exchange Volume$380 millionn/a
Has Been HackedNoNo
SupportEmail, PhoneEmail

Security

Coinbase and eToro are both highly secure and fully regulated platforms.

You can trust both Coinbase and eToro to keep your funds safe thanks to their stringent cyber-security measures. Neither has fallen victim to breaches or hacks that have resulted in loss of user funds. Coinbase handles customer funds and operational capital separately, storing 98% of digital assets in offline cold storage. These hardware wallets are kept in secure vaults around the world where they’re unreachable by hackers and other unauthorized parties. The remaining crypto in the hot wallet is then fully insured by Lloyd’s of London. 

Being based in California, Coinbase is fully licensed and regulated to operate in nearly every state in the US, making it an ideal portal for residents to start their crypto journey. USD deposits are covered by FDIC insurance up to a maximum of $250,000. Non-US customers will have their fiat currency stored in segregated custodial bank accounts. Users can further protect their accounts with 2-step verification while Coinbase takes active measures in ensuring the security of the platform through its bug bounty program.

eToro posts similarly impressive security credentials, taking numerous precautions to keep customer funds and personal information safe. User funds are stored in tier 1 European banks. eToro has only recently started rolling out crypto trading in the US, though it’s already providing unique features not found on other exchanges. The company has created its own multi-crypto wallet to offer a seamless crypto trading solution together with its trading platform and exchange.

Now when you consider overall liquidity and trading volume as part of an exchange’s market stability, Coinbase has a definite advantage over eToro. Coinbase’s liquidity is one of the highest, as computed by crypto research platform Coinpaprika, confirming it to be a highly popular crypto trading site indeed. In contrast, eToro is a relative newcomer to crypto, and its volume and liquidity isn’t as well-established.

Currency Markets

Coinbase lists more digital assets while eToro has more diverse financial assets.

Strictly looking at cryptocurrency options, Coinbase lists several more than eToro, which should be no surprise since fiat-to-crypto has always been Coinbase’s bread and butter. The digital assets available on Coinbase has reached more than 20 coins, most of which are deemed stable enough for new traders. In comparison, eToro only has 15 coins up for trade, though they’re also the most popular and stable ones. eToro also accepts more fiat currencies than Coinbase, which only takes USD, EUR, and GBP. In addition to these, there are several fiat-to-crypto markets on eToro for AUD, NZD, and CAD.

Of course, eToro’s biggest advantage is that it’s a trading platform not just for cryptocurrency, but also for a wide array of financial assets such as stocks, fiat currencies, and commodities. This makes it doubly attractive if you’re interested in an all-encompassing exchange. Moreover, eToro is a social trading platform with features unavailable on Coinbase, such as CopyTrader and CopyPortfolio. Copy Trading is exactly what it sounds like: you can copy the trades that other seasoned traders make automatically. This can also be effective at helping novice traders learn from the experts.

Since it’s intended to introduce fresh users to the blockchain industry, Coinbase only has simple market, stop, and limit orders. Coinbase’s charts and user interface are easy to understand and designed for intuitive navigation and controls. eToro is a bit more complex given the variety of assets you can trade within the platform. However, it allows margin trading up to 2x leverage for riskier earning potential as well as a trailing stop loss to minimize losses. Note that neither CopyTrading nor margin trading are yet to be made available for US residents.

Fees and Support

eToro has lower fees while Coinbase offers better support for new traders.

Unlike other exchanges that charge fees for opening or closing trades, eToro doesn’t have deposit or trading fees. Instead it adds a spread based on the instrument, which goes as low as 0.75% for Bitcoin and up to 4.5% for other assets. Withdrawing funds has a flat $5 fee with a $50 minimum amount. Transactions in fiat currencies other than USD will apply a conversion fee. eToro is also one of the few platforms to allow transactions via PayPal.

On the other hand, Coinbase charges a spread as well as a Coinbase Fee. The spread is typically 0.5% but can fluctuate depending on the market, while the Coinbase Fee varies based on region, product feature and payment type. Coinbase allows brand new crypto traders to purchase their first digital assets via credit or debit card, which incur their own separate fees per country. Withdrawal fees also vary depending on the method used. Overall, eToro’s fees are lower compared to Coinbase’s, which are some of the highest in the industry.

Customer support from Coinbase is available via knowledge base, ticketing system, and phone hotline. Their website also has a chatbot that can help you find the relevant article to your concern. What makes Coinbase especially welcoming to new crypto traders is Coinbase Earn, a learning portal where you can discover blockchain concepts and digital coins and get payouts per course. It has videos, quizzes, and other interactive content that can make crypto quite engaging. 

Meanwhile, eToro’s support is a bit sparse, since its primary channel is via email. There’s also an in-depth help center that you can look through for common questions and user problems. You can also get responses via social media, although for account-related concerns you’ll need to send a ticket.

Verdict

Coinbase is recommended for novice crypto investors while eToro is for seasoned traders.

Coinbase

Better for new crypto traders

Coinbase logo

eToro

More diverse and lower fees

eToro logo

For those joining the crypto trading scene for the first time, Coinbase is our hands-down winner. It has a user-friendly and simplified interface along with a learning portal that also rewards you for gaining a deeper understanding of cryptocurrencies. You can start buying coins with support for more than 100 fiat currencies and even deposit your own digital assets for trading. Fees are a bit high but security and convenience are topnotch, especially with its own Visa debit card that can pay with crypto. 

Despite being a popular platform for a longer time, eToro is still a relatively young crypto exchange, so its liquidity isn’t as impressive. However, its multi-asset platform makes it ideal for users who wish to trade diverse financial instruments while having everything in one place. Seasoned traders will particularly approve of its lower costs as well as the option to copy successful traders. 

FAQs

📌 Is eToro good for cryptocurrency?

eToro is welcoming to new crypto investors with numerous payment methods and low fees. It also has a stellar reputation and a secure platform. However, trading volume is still low compared to other exchanges.

📌 Is Coinbase Pro cheaper than Coinbase?

Yes, Coinbase Pro charges maker and taker fees beginning at 0.5% but this can be reduced depending on your 30-day trading volume. Meanwhile, Coinbase charges a spread plus a Coinbase Fee, which can be as high as 3.99%.

📌 Is eToro really free?

Creating an account and depositing funds on eToro is free. However, trading cryptocurrencies are charged with a spread and withdrawing funds have a fixed $5 fee.

📌 How much does Coinbase charge to withdraw?

Coinbase charges varying fees based on location and payment method. You can check out which applies to you on their Coinbase pricing page here.

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Derick Bondoc
Derick Bondoc

Managing Editor at Compare Before Buying. Writer and researcher passionate about gadgets, gaming and snacks.