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Swyftx Review – Good For Altcoins, Not The Best For Bitcoin

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Get $10 worth of Bitcoin when you sign up to Swyftx here (our referral link)

Swyftx is another Australian cryptocurrency exchange. Unlike other exchanges, however, with Swyftx you are not trading with other users of the platform. Rather, Swyftx is better described as a broker (see here for the difference between exchanges vs brokers) where rather than trading with other users, your orders get sent to Swyftx and they’ll buy or sell some cryptocurrency on your behalf at one of the market places they work with.

In this Swyftx review, I’ll dig into it and advise whether I recommend using it over the many other exchanges available for Australians. Keep reading or click here to skip to my verdict on how good Swyftx is.

Why listen to me? As an Australian who has traded crypto on and off for years, I have a fair bit of experience testing different Australian exchanges. Beyond my favorite cryptocurrency exchange Independent Reserve (see my Independent Reserve review) where I’ve traded hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of crypto, I’ve also tested CoinSpot (see my CoinSpot review), CoinJar (see my CoinJar review) and the not-at-all-recommended Cointree (see my CoinTree review). Lately, I’ve also tried Bitaroo (see my Bitaroo review) and Digital Surge (see my Digital Surge review).

Signing up to Swyftx

Swyftx has a standard signup process, same as any other exchange:

For initial verification, you only need to verify your phone number and enter some basic information about yourself (name, address, DOB). If you start trading any reasonable amount, though, you’ll probably have to do further verification (taking a selfie of yourself as is standard).

Depositing on Swyftx

To get started on Swyftx you can deposit AUD, BTC, ETH or XRP. An important point is that when you deposit AUD on Swyftx, Swyftx then converts it into USD. It used to be the case that when you deposited AUD, Swyftx would have to charge a 0.4% to 0.6% forex fee when converting it to USD (see here), but according to Swyftx they no longer charge such a fee. Here’s my conversation with Swyftx support staff where I asked about this:

The person who originally came back to me responded saying there was a 0.6% fee, which was a mistake, as I later got this reply from someone else when I asked more questions about it:

The other potential concern is whether Swyftx converts your AUD to USD at a fair rate (if you have to convert AUD to USD at most Australian banks, they usually give you a horrible exchange rate). Fortunately, Swyft’s exchange rate is always very good — almost exactly the same as what you’d get if you were doing actual forex trading. You’ll see what Swyftx’s current conversion rate to USD is when you go to make a deposit, on the page at https://trade.swyftx.com.au/trade/AUD/deposit:

This will of course change all the time as the AUD/USD exchange rate changes. But if you compare the exchange rate Swyftx gives you with the real exchange rate (e.g. you can see the AUD/USD exchange rate on Bloomberg here), it’s the same. So Swyftx does not fleece you with any kind of fees or horrible exchange rates when you deposit AUD and they convert it to USD.

Trading on Swyftx

Buying a cryptocurrency on Swyftx looks like this:

The same thing for selling:

This is a nice and simple interface, though I’d prefer if it would show both the buy and sell price on the same screen. Swyftx also offers charts and a list of orders made (the usual things you would expect).

As far as trading fees go, Swyftx charges a standard 0.6% commission, which is not very competitive. CoinJar, CoinSpot and Digital Surge (as long as you use them properly, as I explain in my reviews) all have much lower trading fees, between 0 and 0.3%. Even Independent Reserve, which charges a relatively high 0.5%, is lower. Swyftx is aware that their fees are higher than others and claims that it’s their lower spreads that make them better than other exchanges (see their fee page):

It’s hard to trust exchanges when they say they have lower spreads than competitors (Digital Surge also makes claims about having lower spreads, which I did some checking of in my review of them). You can only really compare the numbers yourself. So, at the time of writing, here are some examples of how Swyftx’s spread compares to Independent Reserve and Digital Surge:

Bitcoin: Spread of 74 on Independent Reserve (50704/50778) vs 280 on Digital Surge (50666/50946) vs 232 on Swyftx (50431/50663)

Ethereum: Spread of 5 on Independent Reserve (2131/2136) vs 19 on Digital Surge (2114/2133) vs 7 on Swyftx (2110/2117)

Litecoin: Spread of 1 on Independent Reserve (198.2/199.2) vs 1.3 on Digital Surge (198.1/199.4) vs 1.8 on Swyftx (196.9/198.7)

EOS: Spread of 0.073 on Independent Reserve (4.134/4.207) vs 0.028 on Digital Surge (4.100/4.128) vs 0.05 on Swyftx (4.056/4.106)

Stellar: Spread of 0.01 on Independent Reserve (0.491/0.501) vs 0.003 on Digital Surge (0.496/0.499) vs 0.006 on Swyftx (0.492/0.498)

Golem: Spread of 0.015 on Independent Reserve (0.250/0.265) vs 0.002 on Digital Surge (0.234/0.236) vs 0.003 on Swyftx (0.232/0.235)

These may be very different if and when you compare spreads yourself (they will change all the time). But my impression of spreads on Swyftx is that like Digital Surge, they definitely have lower spreads than other exchanges if you are trading smaller cryptocurrencies. That’s because Swyftx, like Digital Surge, can tap into other market places when trading altcoins that provide more trading volume and therefore lower spreads.

Other things of note about Swyftx

  • Swyftx offers an Android and iOS app, which isn’t standard with cryptocurrency exchanges in Australia. I haven’t tested these myself yet
  • Swyftx support seems fine (I tried contacting them several times, asking first about verification, then asking them about additional fees when depositing AUD). I was told the wrong information by one of the staff (that there is a 0.6% spread when converting AUD to USD there, which another staff corrected after I inquired further) but I assume that was just a one-off mistake. It has also often taken them several hours to get back to me while other exchanges reply in minutes, though this wouldn’t be a fair comparison since I was contacting Swyftx at night and during the weekend
  • For some reason, the table of sell and buy prices Swyftx lists on their fees page doesn’t match the prices listed when you’ve actually logged in and want to trade for me, so ignore the numbers there
  • I’m currently trying to confirm what Swyftx’s fees for withdrawing cryptocurrency usually are, since they just say “standard network mining fees”. But that could be a wide range, since when you transfer Bitcoin there’s an option for how much you pay, and the more you pay the faster the transaction goes through. I like the way Bitaroo does fees for cryptocurrency withdrawals, where they have “Economy”, “Standard” and “Priority” withdrawal fees. I’ll update this article with information on Swyftx’s withdrawal fees when I have it

Is Swyftx recommended?

I consider Swyftx to be similar to Digital Surge. Both Swyftx and Digital Surge are not ideal if you’re trading Bitcoin and Ethereum, but if you’re looking to trade smaller cryptocurrencies, they’re definitely the best 2 exchanges in Australia for this purpose. So definitely sign up to Swyftx if you’re looking to trade altcoins. It’s hard to say definitively whether Swyftx is better or worse than Digital Surge. I recommend signing up to both, and when you’re trading some altcoin, check the prices on both of them.

Where do I get $10 of free Bitcoin from Swyftx?

Sign up to Swyftx here to get $10 of free Bitcoin. If you sign up directly at Swyftx.com.au instead, you’ll miss out on the Bitcoin.

What about if you want to buy Bitcoin only?

If you’re only looking to trade Bitcoin, I don’t necessarily recommend signing up to Swyftx, as there are other exchanges where you’ll pay lower fees or get lower spreads. These other Australian exchanges are more suitable for that:

Finally: Do you have to use an Australian-based crypto exchange if you're Australian?

It's worth mentioning that as an Australian, you're not limited only to Australian-based crypto exchanges. In addition to the above, I also recommend signing up to Binance (see my Binance review), the biggest exchange in the world right now. You can sign up and use them as an Australian and buy crypto with AUD with no issues. I've been a Binance user for a while and enjoy a lot of their features, especially the ability to earn passive interest on crypto and stablecoins. Binance has heaps of features that no Australian exchange offers, so you should definitely sign up to them.

Also, in addition to Binance, check out Bittrex, Bitstamp and Poloniex (all these exchanges allow Australian users). These are my personal referral links which can sometimes get you perks if you sign up through them (e.g. if you sign up to Poloniex using my Referral Code RKLBN4YZ, you'll also get a 10% rebate on trading fees).

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Swyftx
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Swyftx
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