Bitfinex, the dominant British Virgin Islands-registered cryptocurrency exchange, may be trying to drum-up new business from retail bitcoin traders. The firm announced on Tuesday that it has removed its minimum equity requirement of $10,000 to trade on its platform, hoping to make the platform open "to everyone" after a surge in demand from traders in the past six months.
"We simply could not ignore the increasing level of requests for access to trade on Bitfinex from a wider cohort than our traditional customer base," Jean-Louis van der Velde, CEO at Bitfinex, said in a Medium post. "For the last six months we have been working hard to ready our platform for a new wave of customer accounts and are now in a position to open Bitfinex to a wider audience."
In addition, Bitfinex is also introducing an upgraded support center with a "more intuitive user experience, offering automated responses to common queries" as well as an educational token information platform.
Minimum deposits are not an unusual feature in trading. E*Trade, one of the largest stock brokers in the U.S., requires a $500 cash balance to begin trading. Most brokerage accounts in equities require users to deposit a minimum amount if they are trading on margin.
Reporting by Frank Chaparro.