What is Kraken? Beginner-Friendly Guide

September 30, 2019

Kraken is one of the oldest and most popular crypto exchanges based in San Francisco. In 2011, current CEO Jesse Powell founded Kraken, while the official launch happened in 2013.

The exchange is suitable for both beginners and advanced traders, as well as for individuals and companies. Kraken is also a leader when it comes to bitcoin-to-euro trading volume.

Now, let’s find out more about Kraken and how you can trade on the platform.

Trading crypto on Kraken

The exchange allows crypto trading to the citizens of the United States, Canada, Japan, and various European countries. Plus, margin lending and futures trading is available for US residents.

The exchange offers 47 market pairs with seven base currencies. Here you can see a list of all tradable currency pairs. Kraken also doesn’t mind dealing with fiat currencies such as the US dollar, Canadian dollar, euro, pound, and yen.  

This gives Kraken an advantage compared with other crypto exchanges that don’t include a large number of fiat currencies for trading.

But, that’s not the only advantage. The exchange allows withdrawals with both cryptocurrency and bank or wire transfers.

And for those who don’t want their order to be visible, Kraken has a dark pool. What exactly is a dark pool? In short, it’s a separate order book not visible to the rest of the market, which allows traders to trade anonymously.

So, let’s take a look at how you can create an account and start trading on Kraken.

Step-by-step guide to create an account and trade on Kraken

Here is how to easily set up a Kraken account:

  1. Go to the Kraken website and in the top right corner find a ‘create account’ link tab.
  2. Here you’ll have to provide some basic information such as your email address and a password. After filling that out wait for a confirmation email.
  3. Go to your inbox and click on the confirmation email. From here you’ll be taken to an overview of your account.
  4. Now is the time to get verified. Find the Get verified tab along the top.
  5. After clicking there, you’ll be presented with three account types to choose from: starter, intermediate, and pro. If you’re a beginner, we recommend you choose starter, while institutional traders may prefer pro.
  6. If you pick starter, head over to the funding tab, and click on ‘get verified’.
  7. Then, you’ll have to accept acknowledgment that Kraken isn’t responsible in case for the loss of funds.
  8. That’s it. Now you can start depositing funds.

As you can see, creating an account on the exchange isn’t complicated, however, keep in mind that new registrations may have to wait for a week or more to be fully verified.


Kraken is appealing to traders for different reasons. For starters, it has a lower fee structure compared to other big crypto exchanges such as Coinbase. The platform also has a user-friendly and easy-to-navigate interface.

What’s more, Kraken has been resilient to hack attacks so far. And to protect user’s funds it uses different techniques such as cold storage, a ‘two-factor authentication’ (2-FA), and a ‘Global Settings Lock’ (GSL), which prevents phishing attacks.

In June 2019, Kraken revealed that it has raised over $13 million from 2264 investors in the latest fundraising campaign.

And now it is your turn to talk about Kraken. Tell us in the comments whether you’re using this crypto exchange and what do you think about it?



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