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How to trade bitcoins

The bitcoins market is relatively immature compared to other markets and so there is limited ways to trade them. Currently you can trade the spot market – trading bitcoins directly as you would the forex market.

You need to set up an account with a bitcoin broker to trade bitcoins.

 

To access the market, you need to setup an account with a bitcoin broker. It's also worthwhile you knowing the settlement and order matching processes for when you do trade bitcoins.

With these brokers you can trade bitcoins

How to place an order with bitcoin

Placing an order on a platform is quite simple, allowing the user to specify a limit or get filled via the market.

You are able to specify a dollar amount (depending on your base currency) and the number of bitcoins you would like to purchase or sell.

Markets.com offers the MetaTrader 4 (MT4) software to trade bitcoins. tradimo offers great MT4 tutorials. eToro offers its own trading software.

How order matching works with bitcoin

Since bitcoins are traded under the "over the counter" principle, a counterparty is required to fulfill the order - in other words, you need someone to buy or sell the bitcoins to complete your trade - the spreads quite large and the liquidity low.

 

Summary

So far you have learned that...

  • ... to access the bitcoins market, you need to set up an account with a bitcoin broker.
  • ... placing a trade is straight forward with a bitcoins broker. You can specify the amount of bitcoins you would like to purchase and the price that you wish to get filled at.
  • ... bitcoins can be subject to wide spreads and reduced liquidity.