Huobi.com – Scam or Not?
Huobi is one of the largest Chinese exchange platforms. It’s based in Beijing, China. The trading platform was founded by Leon Li in September of 2013, and the company’s focus is on the Chinese market.
Huobi is one of the “Big Three” exchanges in the world, and it claims to have reached a record amount of 380,000 BTC traded daily on February 25, 2014. The company is accused of faking trading volumes numerous times, but these claims were never proven. They also own a trading platform BitYes, which is focused on international users and offers trading services in BTC/USD and LTC/USD pairs.
Verification at Huobi
The verification process on Huobi.com is a bit more demanding than average. The website is in Chinese and meant for Chinese traders, but the foreigners can also register and trade.
After registering and providing personal info, the user will have to verify an email address. After the email verification is completed, the website asks for a verification of user’s real name.
It’s vital that the name provided by the user is absolutely identical to the name of bank account user wants to connect to the Huobi account. This is especially important for the foreigners. Bank employees in China are prone to making spelling errors when it comes to the names of foreigners, or putting the names in the wrong order.
The name needs to match on both accounts in order to make transfers between Huobi and the bank.
After the name verification, the exchange requires nationality verification. Users can choose a country from a drop-down menu. For foreigners, a passport is automatically selected. Chinese residents have more options and they include:
2. Chinese ID card
3. Military Officer Certificate
4. Chinese mainland driving license
5. Social insurance number
The user has to submit a selfie with the government document, as seen below and a snapshot of the latest three deposit transactions.
After all that mobile verification is required. Since the website isn’t very well translated to English, a good Samaritan made a detailed registration guide. It’s available here.
The exchange accepts two FIAT currencies – Chinese Yuan (CNY) and US dollar (USD). They also accept two digital currencies – Bitcoin (BTC) and Litecoin (LTC).
Huobi’s Fee Schedule
The biggest Chinese trading platform has the following fee schedule:
For US dollar trading:
The maker fee is 0.1 percent of the amount traded. For volumes traded in the last 30 days the taker fee 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
Trading in Chinese Yuan has a flat fee 0f 0.2 percent of the amount traded. The exchange abolished the no-fee policy in January of 2017 in order to prevent influence on the market and increase liquidity.
Deposits made in Chinese Yuan are free of charge. Deposits in US dollars are charged according to the following schedule.
- 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
Withdrawals in Chinese Yuan are charged in accordance with the levels. Each level is reached when the specified number of points is gathered. 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
Withdrawals in cryptocurrencies are charged – 0.0001 BTC and 0.001 LTC respectively.
The exchange offers the following order types:
- Market order
- Limit order
- Stop Limit order
Besides that, margin trading is available in both BTC and LTC with 5x leverage and a 24-hours fee of 0.1 percent.
The most interesting feature is definitely the Flash Trade function which incorporates order book, chart index, and market chart. The Flash Trade enables real-time trading, especially in the times of high volatility.
The exchange doesn’t support derivates and futures trading.
Ease of Use
The interface looks good, and it’s fairly easy to use. There are two languages available – Chinese and English, but the website is only partially translated into English, and it’s still difficult to use for foreigners.
The website is fast and responsive, which is of particular importance to the exchanges with high liquidity such as Huobi. The trading platform also offers Android and iOS apps for mobile users.
The exchange has a great support team which can be reached by phone, email, ticket or by social networks. The staff is very polite and willing to go above and beyond to resolve a problem. Typical response time is 2 to 3 hours.
There are some complaints about the Huobi. Primarily, some users claim that the company is breaking Chinese laws.
There are also reports that the exchange has taken money from user’s accounts to cover the loss of approximately 5000 Bitcoins caused by employee’ error.
Huobi has invested a lot in security and even passed many third-party tests. They offer two-factor authentication, SMS and email notifications and PGP encryption for emails. Over 98 percent of the customer assets are stored in the multi-sig cold wallet, which outputs are limited to Huobi’s hot wallet. The wallets are monitored 24/7 so that the staff could reach immediately in case of a breach.
The exchange was hacked in the past, but no customer funds were stolen.
Huobi Review Conclusion
The largest Chinese exchange is certainly a great place for experienced Asian traders.
- No fees for Chinese traders
- Super-high liquidity
- 24/7 phone support
- Minimal information in English
- Possibly faking trading volume
Huobi is one of the best Asian Bitcoin exchanges. That’s a fact. Everything else is a matter of choice.
Do you have good or bad experiences with this Bitcoin Exchange? Please share them!