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How Regulators Lost Control of Crypto – FT

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Just a quick aside before viewing this excellent video.

Many crypto brokers advertise zero commission trading.  The following is from the firm where I flip around in the cryptic world of Crypto:

Crypto trading has $0 commissions, however they are charged [bid-ask] spreads…When you buy a crypto asset at ____ we charge a “round trip” spread that covers both the buy and the sell. This spread varies depending on the crypto you’re investing in.  —>  [BTC = 0.75%; Dogecoin = 2.9%; Sheba = 2.9%;  Maker = 4.9%]

Any trader who has ever made markets for their customers knows that bid-offer spreads are not fixed, are fluid, and depend on the liquidity and volatility of the asset being bought or sold.  The spread is what the firm is paid for using its balance sheet to provide liquidity.

I am willing to bet this firm doesn’t use its balance sheet.

Moreover, my priors are 90% of retail crypto traders don’t even know what a bid-offer spread is. I used to make markets in Sudan sovereign busted debt with a $.02 – $.04 bid-offer spread, that’s a spread of 100% of the bid price!

While the regulators contemplate how to lasso the new Wild West of financial markets, how about first starting with a little unambiguous  “Truth In Advertising”  in the crypto world?


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