MoonPay Review: A Closer Look at This Crypto Exchange
The MoonPay crypto exchange has rambled onto the scene in rapid fashion. Over the past few years the exchange has gone from an idea to an operation with a valuation of $3.4 billion. In this MoonPay review we’ll discuss whether its rise is warranted and whether you should consider using it as your primary exchange.
Investing in crypto can be as easy or hard as you want to make it. If you’re sticking to major coins like Bitcoin (BTC), Ethereum (ETH) or Solana (SOL), the process can be very easy. Essentially, you just need to sign up for an account with one of the major exchanges like Coinbase and get to it.
The beauty of Coinbase is that it easily lets you trade fiat currency for digital tokens. And its ever-growing roster of available tokens has only made it a more appealing choice. But the growing list of available tokens on Coinbase has drawn some unwanted attention of late. And that attention has soured some users.
Found an ETH address that bought hundreds of thousands of dollars of tokens exclusively featured in the Coinbase Asset Listing post about 24 hours before it was published, rofl pic.twitter.com/5QlVTjl0Jp
— Cobie (@cobie) April 12, 2022
We’re not gonna weigh in on whether insider trading occurred at Coinbase. It’s a pretty serious accusation. The SEC could possibly get involved. And we’ll leave it up to them to figure all of that out. Nonetheless, under the current circumstances, it feels like the perfect time to look at other exchanges. So without further ado, let’s dig into our MoonPay Review.
MoonPay Review: How to Trade Crypto
As was mentioned above, buying crypto on some exchanges is easy. For others, it can be cumbersome. After making a couple trades, for this MoonPay review, we’ve got to say this part of the process is pretty easy. Not Coinbase easy… But easy nonetheless.
When you first head over to MoonPay to buy crypto, you’ll come across an easy-to-use interface. You simply pick your token of choice and mark down how much money you want to spend. And you can use U.S. dollars or a slew of other fiat currencies. Here’s what that looks like:
Now, it’s worth noting that there is a transaction minimum. When buying Bitcoin, we had to spend at least $30 worth. For Solana, the minimum transaction was $39. And for Shiba Inu, the minimum transaction was $62.
For the most part, the minimum order on MoonPay should equate to around €30 – or the equivalent in your local currency. However, this can vary from coin to coin if MoonPay’s liquidity provider recommends it. Which is what we encountered during this MoonPay review.
Nonetheless, this part is pretty straightforward. From there, all you have to do is enter your wallet’s address in the next window and you’re ready to trade your fiat money for crypto. If you don’t have a digital wallet, you can check out some of our favorite crypto wallets here.
For this part of the process we give MoonPay high marks. It’s made the process of buying crypto pretty easy. However, we would have liked the option to simply use a native wallet that could come with our account. It would make the barrier to entry that much lower. However, for seasoned crypto traders, this should pose no issue.
As we mentioned earlier in this MoonPay review, there is a floating transaction minimum. While this makes perfect sense, it is annoying… Especially when we just wanted to spend a couple bucks on a couple of tokens for the sake of testing the process. But that’s not really a big deal at all.
What we weren’t too crazy about was the fee structure…
There is a flat fee of $4.99 on top of any purchase below $141. This is in addition to a fee of 3.5% of the transaction. That’s pretty steep. So this probably isn’t an idea exchange for active traders. But the buy-and-hold crowd might be able to look past this.
Just to draw a comparison, Coinbase charges a fee of 1.49% for those using a bank account or Coinbase wallet. Debit card users see a 3.99% fee that comes with their transaction on Coinbase. And on the other end of the scale, PancakeSwap users pay a 0.25% trading fee. However, PancakeSwap comes with a much higher learning curve and some glitchy third-party applications that can make it even more difficult to use. To each their own…
The other drawback we discovered during this MoonPay review is the limited tokens to choose from. While we expect this number to go up, at last check, it only had 40 tokens to choose from. But again, the breadth of offerings is likely to go up soon. So this could be a moot point soon.
At the end of 2021, MoonPay closed its Series A funding after raising $555 million. In the process, it raised nearly $90 million from some high-profile investors like Snoop Dogg, Bruce Willis and Maria Sharapova. But it sounds like the famous set were getting in because of MoonPay’s NFT project.
About Those NFTs…
In the past couple of years, non-fungible tokens (NFTs) went from obscurity to a billion-dollar enterprise. And many believe NFTs could play a big role in the way content creators market their work and engage with fans. This is why it makes sense that the rich and famous would want a piece of the MoonPay pie.
Again, MoonPay just makes the barrier to entry to NFTs a bit lower. For the most part, anyone that wants to get their digital hands on an NFT needs some crypto first. But MoonPay provides infrastructure that makes it easier to buy them with a credit or debit card. And lowering the barrier of entry is only going to increase the number of people engaging with crypto and NFTs.
That being said, this process does still require a wallet connected to MoonPay. Then collectors need to buy Ethereum. From there, you’ll have to head over to OpenSea and trade Ethereum for the NFT of your choice. And remember, you’ll need a bit more crypto than the list price to cover gas fees.
MoonPay Review: The Bottom Line
We always like seeing new competition in the crypto space. It can lead to more innovation. And from what we saw digging around for this MoonPay review, this outfit is doing just that. It’s not perfect (from our vantage point) just yet. But keep in mind, this is a relatively new operation.
We think MoonPay is already bringing a disruptive force into the crypto markets. And with time, that’s likely to increase. However, with wider adoption, we really hope those fees come down. And it’d be nice to have more tokens available to investors. A smartphone app would be a nice addition as well too.
But in the end, we think MoonPay provides an excellent middle ground between centralized exchanges like Coinbase and decentralized exchanges like PancakeSwap. And we look forward to watching it grow. There are lots of platforms and investment opportunities to keep an eye on…
About Matthew Makowski
Matthew Makowski is a senior research analyst and writer at Investment U. He has been studying and writing about the markets for 20 years. Equally comfortable identifying value stocks as he is discounts in the crypto markets, Matthew began mining Bitcoin in 2011 and has since honed his focus on the cryptocurrency markets as a whole. He is a graduate of Rutgers University and lives in Colorado with his dogs Dorito and Pretzel.