itBit Review

Regulated crypto exchange designed for institutional traders and investors

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itBit

itBit

overall rating
4.0

Our Take 

Aimed at enterprise investors, itBit offers very low trading fees, as well API integration to third-party apps for connecting trading tools to the platform. Although beginners can also buy crypto on itBit, there are very few currencies available on the platform, and it is better suited for high-volume institutional traders and investors.

  • Pros & Cons
  • Key Takeaways
  • Specifications
Pros & Cons
Pros
  • Fully-regulated by New York State Department of Financial Services (NYDFS)

  • Focus on security

  • Very low fees, with discounts for high-volume traders

Cons
  • Only offers six crypto assets (BTC, ETH, BCH, LTC, USDP, and PAXG)

  • No access to margin or futures trading

  • No debit/credit card purchases or ACH transfer available

Key Takeaways
  • ItBit is a regulated cryptocurrency exchange that offers institutional trading for Bitcoin and a few other popular digital assets.
  • ItBit offers 24/5 customer phone support, which is rare in the industry.
  • ItBit only supports 11 cryptocurrencies, including Bitcoin (BTC), Ethereum (ETH), Litecoin (LTC), Bitcoin Cash (BCH), Paxos Gold (PAXG), and Pax Dollar (USDP).
  • ItBit is available in all 50 U.S. states.
Specifications
  • Year Founded 2012
  • Official Website www.paxos.com/itbit
  • Cryptocurrencies Available 6
  • Customer Support Email

Introduction

ItBit is a cryptocurrency exchange aimed at institutional investors, allowing them to trade or store 11 different crypto assets. ItBit is regulated by the New York State Department of Financial Services (NYDFS) and adheres to its regulatory standards for exchanges, including insurance and reserves for deposits. ItBit only offers a few popular crypto options, including Bitcoin and Ethereum, and offers over-the-counter (OTC) trading for trades of $100,000 or more.

We’ve reviewed itBit’s platform, fees, user experience, customer service, available crypto, and more to determine if it’s a good option for crypto investors and traders.

Investing in cryptocurrencies, Decentralized Finance (DeFi), and other Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs) is highly risky and speculative, and the markets can be extremely volatile. Consult with a qualified professional before making any financial decisions. This article is not a recommendation by The Balance or the writer to invest in cryptocurrencies nor can the accuracy or timeliness of the information be guaranteed.

Company Overview

ItBit was founded in 2012 by Charles Cascarilla, and it was rebranded as itBit by Paxos in 2016. While itBit exchange still retains its name, it’s part of Paxos Trust Company, a financial services company that offers securities settlement and trading integration services. ItBit is available in all 50 U.S. states, as well as in many countries around the globe. There is not a running list of restricted countries, but itBit is not available in any jurisdiction that is subject to the sanctions lists published by the U.S. Department of the Treasury and the Financial Action Task Force.

ItBit offers simple order types, including market and limit orders, and does not support margin or futures trading. 

ItBit was the first crypto exchange to be regulated by the NYDFS back in 2015.

Cryptocurrencies That Trade on itBit

ItBit only offers access to 11 cryptocurrencies, two of which are Paxos-branded stablecoins. It supports Bitcoin (BTC), Ethereum (ETH), Litecoin (LTC), Bitcoin Cash (BCH), Aave (AAVE), Uniswap (UNI), Chainlink (LINK), Polygon (MATIC), Paxos Gold (PAXG), Binance (BUSD), and Pax Dollar (USDP). 

Each Paxos Gold coin is backed by physical gold, while each Paxos Dollar is backed by a physical U.S. Dollar. This is rare among stablecoins, including options like Tether, which keeps 10% of its reserves in actual cash.

The OTC trading desk also supports trading of Stellar Lumens (XLM), but is not available to retail investors with trades of less than $100,000.

Trading Experience

ItBit offers an enterprise-grade platform, but the user interface is simple. Only market, limit, and post-only orders are available, and there are no stop orders or other advanced order types. Users can also connect third-party trading tools via the itBit APIs, allowing advanced traders to use their own trading bots or market analysis tools.

ItBit also offers a digital hot wallet that only supports the eight crypto assets offered on the platform. 

Fees

ItBit offers low trading fees, but it charges for most deposits and withdrawals. Institutions can avoid fees by using Silvergate Exchange Network (SEN) transfers, but they must have an account with Silvergate Bank.

Action BitMart Fee 
Bank Account Deposit N/A
Crypto Wallet Deposit  Market rate 
Debit/Credit card  N/A 
ACH Transfer  1% ($1 min) 
Wire Transfer  Free 
Crypto Conversion  N/A 
Purchases  -0.003% to 0.035% (Maker-Taker) 
Trades  -0.003% to 0.035% (Maker-Taker) 
Crypto Withdrawal  Market rate 

itBit Trading Fees

ItBit trading fees are as low as 0.00%. And in some instances, itBit offers rebates for larger trades. ItBit charges trading fees based on a maker-taker fee model, with different fees based on the type of trade placed. Fees will differ depending on if your order is considered a maker or a taker order.

Here is a breakdown of the itBit fee structure:

Tier #  30-Day Trading Volume  Fees 
Tier 1 ≤ $25,000 Maker - 0.025%  |  Taker - 0.035%
Tier 2  $25,000 - $100,000  Maker - 0.020%  |  Taker - 0.035% 
Tier 3  $100,000 - $250,000  Maker - 0.0175%  |  Taker - 0.025%
Tier 4  $250,000 - $600,000  Maker - 0.025%  |  Taker - 0.020% 
Tier 5  $600,000 - $1,000,000  Maker - 0.025%  |  Taker - 0.0175% 
Tier 6  $1,000,000 - $3,000,000  Maker - 0.025%  |  Taker - 0.0175% 
Tier 7  $3,000,000 - $15,000,000  Maker - 0.0%  |  Taker - 0.015% 
Tier 8  $15,000,000 - $60,000,000  Maker - (0.003%)  |  Taker - 0.010% 
Tier 9  $60,000,000 - $100,000,000  Maker - (0.003%)  |  Taker - 0.006% 

Security

ItBit offers several security features to help protect user accounts, including two-factor authentication (2FA) and cold storage of all customer-owned crypto assets. It also offers custodial services, as well as insurance against theft.

Here are some details about itBit’s security features:

  • Cold storage: ItBit keeps 100% of all customer-owned crypto assets in offline cold storage vaults, helping to protect your assets from hackers.
  • Two-factor authentication: ItBit requires two-factor authentication (2FA) via Duo, Authy, or Google Authenticator for creating an account. It asks for your unique code at account login, along with your username and password.
  • Stablecoin insurance: ItBit carries insurance against the gold holdings that back the PAXG stablecoin. It also offers FDIC insurance (up to $250,000) for any USD or USD-backed stablecoins in your Paxos wallet.
  • Paxos custodial service: ItBit’s parent company (Paxos) offers custodial services for crypto assets. This service is regulated by NYDFS, and all assets are backed by company-held reserves in case of loss. Crypto assets are held in secure offline storage, and accessible when needed.

Opening an itBit Account

To create an itBit account, you will provide your email address and password on the Paxos website. Once new accounts are verified via email, itBit requires that you secure your account with 2FA using a third-party app (like Google Authenticator).

Before your account is approved, you will need to verify your identity. This includes providing your full name, address, and Social Security number, along with a picture of a government-issued photo ID. You will also need to take a selfie and submit it to match your photo identification. In addition, you may be required to submit a utility bill or other bill to verify your current address.

Once your account is verified, you can deposit fiat currency or crypto and begin trading. You can also connect any third-party apps using the itBit APIs.

Customer Service

ItBit only offers email assistance for retail clients, but you need to submit a contact form in the customer support center to get in touch with support. Business hours are not publicly listed, and no public phone number is available for customer service.

The itBit site only offers basic help articles, and there are educational articles on its blog; however, most are aimed at enterprise clients, not retail investors.

Customer Satisfaction

ItBit doesn’t have many customer reviews available, but its reviews are fairly split. Several complaints are related to poor interactions with customer service, and the fact that itBit used to offer phone support before the Paxos rebranding in 2016. Overall, itBit seems to offer a decent platform for institutional traders, but may not be the best fit for retail traders.

Account Management

ItBit is a web-based platform that allows users to trade a small selection of crypto. Users can view their portfolios, place buy and sell trades, and transfer funds on and off the platform. Institution clients and large volume traders can work directly with the Paxos OTC team for large trades. ItBit does not offer a mobile app, but the platform is mobile-friendly. 

The web interface is simple, but advanced traders can connect to itBit via APIs to execute automated trading bots, or pull in real-time market data for analysis. Overall, itBit is a simple crypto exchange that does not offer many built-in tools, but it's aimed at institutional investors and those who want to connect their own trading tools to the platform.

How itBit Compares to Other Cryptocurrency Companies

ItBit may be ideal for institutional traders seeking a secure way to trade Bitcoin and a few other popular cryptocurrencies. It offers third-party integration via its API, as well as high liquidity for large trading volumes.

ItBit offers Bitcoin, Ethereum, Bitcoin Cash, Litecoin, Aave, Uniswap, Chainlink, and Polygon for trading, as well as access to three stablecoins, Binance USD, Paxos Gold and Paxos Dollar. This is a much smaller selection than most major crypto exchanges.

Here’s how itBit compares to Coinbase, a popular crypto exchange in the U.S.

ItBit vs. Coinbase

ItBit and Coinbase both offer a simple way to buy and sell Bitcoin and Ethereum. These exchanges offer top-notch security features and cater to institutional traders with OTC services available. 

But while itBit is focused almost exclusively on institutional traders and third-party integrations, Coinbase is a full-fledged cryptocurrency exchange offering a much larger selection of assets to buy, sell, and trade. Coinbase also offers crypto-backed loans, which itBit doesn’t offer.

Here are a few other differences between itBit and Coinbase:

  • Coinbase offers over 100 cryptocurrencies for trading, while itBit only offers 11.
  • ItBit is available in all 50 U.S. states, while Coinbase only supports 49 (not available in Hawaii).
  • Coinbase offers users rewards for watching quick videos on certain supported crypto, while itBit does not.
  • ItBit charges much lower fees for buying Bitcoin than Coinbase.

ItBit is a secure platform for institutional traders that want a secure way to trade Bitcoin and a few other cryptocurrencies for very low fees. Coinbase is ideal for beginner crypto investors that want access to a simple way to purchase Bitcoin, or to one of over 100 cryptocurrencies.

Final Verdict

ItBit is a decent platform for institutional traders that value security, liquidity, and low fees. It offers a transparent fees structure, as well as OTC services for handling large crypto investments. And with API integration, those that want full control of their trading experience with third-party bots and tools can gain full access to itBit’s platform for trading.

That being said, itBit is not a great choice for retail investors. It only offers 11 different cryptos to trade, so those that need more selection will want to look elsewhere. The trading tools for regular investors are simplified, and no stop orders or leveraged trading is available. Overall, itBit is designed for enterprise-level investors and serves them well.

Methodology 

The Balance is dedicated to helping those interested in cryptocurrency investing make informed and safe decisions. We are committed to providing our readers with unbiased reviews of the top cryptocurrency exchanges for investors of all levels.


Exchanges were reviewed on points including security, fees, number of cryptocurrencies available, and more. We also considered if the exchange is regulated by a proper agency or entirely decentralized. Our full cryptocurrency exchange methodology, including the data collection and review processes and weighted data points, is available for review.