Following the unexpected bankruptcy of the once-celebrated cryptocurrency exchange FTX, which led to a loss of $4 billion in customer deposits, the crypto landscape has been undeniably shaken.
As a response, crypto exchanges have pooled a staggering $2.5 billion, making significant strides in safeguarding their users and renewing their focus on credibility.
The emphasis on credibility and transparency
The fall of FTX threw the spotlight on credibility and transparency in the crypto exchange industry, with users demanding higher levels of both.
The industry response has been promising with many exchanges now offering Proof of Reserves (PoR), a public declaration of their reserve assets backed by an independent audit.
This move towards transparency serves to instill trust, though it does not entirely guarantee the solvency of an exchange.
Moreover, exchanges have begun to focus on protection funds, buffers meant to cover any losses in case of hacks. Post-FTX, both Binance and Bitget have significantly increased their protection funds, an act of overcollateralization that further instills user confidence.
However, even with this level of protection, robust risk management practices remain essential.
In the aftermath of the FTX debacle, the industry saw a slight decrease in spot trading. Binance managed to maintain relatively stable volumes, with a minimal 10% drop, while Bybit and Kraken saw their volumes increase.
This resilience in the face of crisis demonstrates that some exchanges are well-poised to weather the storm.
The growing popularity of Decentralized Exchanges (DEXs) can be attributed to the drop in trust for centralized exchanges following the FTX collapse and the increasing regulatory uncertainty.
On the flip side, derivatives trading volume has experienced a small decline with only Bitget seeing a growth in their trading volume in the aftermath of the FTX saga.
Legal landscape and exchange tokens
The crypto industry is currently walking a tightrope, balancing innovation with regulatory compliance. Exchanges are grappling with various requirements for Know Your Customer (KYC) and Anti-Money Laundering (AML) measures.
The latter have proven crucial in maintaining the exchange’s legitimacy and operational status in different jurisdictions.
In addition to compliance efforts, many exchanges have listed tokens to incentivize users. MX, BGB, and OKB are notable outperformers, demonstrating strong performance even in the midst of a bear market.
The use of these tokens enhances user experience, offers reduced fees, and provides access to exclusive products.
The latest trends within the crypto exchange industry point to a shift towards Web3 products and copy trading.
Copy trading, which allows users to follow the strategies of top traders, is another feature gaining popularity, with exchanges like Bitget, ByBit, OKX, and Gate.io leading the way.
The post-FTX landscape has indeed altered the dynamics of crypto exchanges, but the industry’s response has been commendable.
As they traverse this evolving landscape, crypto exchanges remain committed to enhancing user trust, adopting best practices, and innovating for a safer and more secure future in digital assets trading.
This article is based off a recent report by Nansen.