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The American cryptocurrency exchange BinanceUS is no longer charging fees for buying or selling Bitcoin with U.S. dollars.
That includes eliminating fees on Bitcoin trades for the three top stablecoins: USDT, USDC, and BUSD. Such stablecoins are pegged to the U.S. dollar using USD reserves, or other highly liquid financial instruments.
The change, effective immediately, is “an opportunity to revolutionize the way fees are approached in our industry, increase accessibility to crypto, and help our market and customers in a time of need,” BinanceUS CEO Brian Shroder said in a company statement.
This makes BinanceUS the first American crypto exchange to scrap trading fees on multiple Bitcoin trading pairs. It’s an impactful but arguably counterintuitive decision for a company whose primary business model is dependent on such charges, especially when considering the high volumes of Bitcoin and USDT traded on most days.
This isn’t the exchange’s first unorthodox move of late. Despite the current crypto bear market, Binance has announced over 2,000 job openings, possibly in an effort to scoop up top industry talent that’s recently exited (or not quite joined) competitors such as Coinbase.
Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao claims to have built up a “war chest” after choosing to end U.S. ad spots during the bull market. Indeed, while Binance is the largest crypto exchange worldwide, Coinbase has it beat for popularity in the U.S. That said, a bold move like eliminating Bitcoin trading fees could attract more investors.
“We see this as the first fee change of many for Binance.US. Bitcoin will serve as a test for the model, which could potentially be rolled out across other tokens and pairs down the line,” company spokesman Sam Fisher told Decrypt in an email.
Strike, a Bitcoin payments app, took a similar approach to Binance last year, by reducing commissions on Bitcoin buys to 0.3%. CEO Jack Mallers explained in a 2021 interview why he believed this was his company’s best long-term approach.
“It’s a race to the bottom,” said Mallers, arguing that future competitors will simply charge lower and lower fees. “You saw this in the equities market. Now, executing an equities trade is free. That’s called Robinhood.”