The cryptocurrency exchange first announced its futures platform in early July, at the time hinting it would allow 20x leverage. Now, futures traders can now choose leveraged positions between 1x and 125x, it said Friday.
Binance’s futures exchange is raising leverage to 125x with the launch of bitcoin (BTC)/tether (USDT) contracts today.
“We have seen an increase in institutional participation in trading … And they are flocking to Binance Futures”, said Binance CEO Changpeng “CZ” Zhao in a statement. “The market has been demanding a product with superior stability and performance; now we are providing one.”
Max leverage positions on Binance now exceed crypto exchange BitMEX’s futures leverage positions, which top off at 100x for some contracts.
Noted economist and crypto skeptic Nouriel Roubini has previously argued that, in providing such high leverage, exchanges are exposing traders to too much risk.
Binance said its BTC futures contract provides a built-in hedging tool to help traders manage that risk. Further, the exchange said it’s providing an “insurance fund” (the firm’s quotation marks) that “helps to limit the chances of auto-deleverage.”
The announcement comes amidst tightening competition in the bitcoin futures space. Intercontinental Exchange’s Bakkt bitcoin futures exchange launched this September. Although the exchange’s initial volume disappointed critics, the exchange has already conducted its first block trade for two institutional investors.
Opera Browser Adds Bitcoin Payments to Android Update
The Opera web browser has added bitcoin e-commerce and TRON integration to its Android app, the company said.
The enhanced crypto functionality will let Opera for android users make bitcoin payments directly from its built-in digital wallet and interact with decentralized apps (dapps) on the TRON blockchain. It could increase crypto visibility among the browser’s claimed 300 million users.
Charles Hamel, Head of Crypto at Opera, told CoinDesk:
“Most people have heard of bitcoin and thus we saw it as important to support it and make this feature more familiar to a larger group of people.”
Of the top-five browsers chrome, safari, Samsung Internet, UC browser and Opera – Opera remains the only one to have digital wallet integration. Now it is another tech move by one of the web’s oldest apps.
Though technically a legacy product (Opera launched as a research project over two decades ago) the Norway-based web surfer pivoted towards crypto in the past year, regularly expanding digital wallet functionality to its mobile and desktop offerings.
In July 2018, Opera for Android piloted an ethereum digital wallet as a step towards “Web 3.0:” the vision of a decentralized future internet built on a blockchain. It then began studying blockchain “growth opportunities” with financial services advisors Ledger Capital that October.
Since then, Opera introduced a “web 3 ready” android browser, a crypto-friendly iOS app, a desktop browser with native digital wallet support, and partnered with a Swedish crypto broker to sell Scandinavians discounted ETH.
Hamel told CoinDesk that the apps are now synchronized and optimized for adoption of a future web3. But he said that adding bitcoin was a challenge, as much because of its differences as its use-cases.
“Bitcoin is a completely different beast that requires its own infrastructure and has a payment-focused usage scenario.”