Scheduled Downtime: 15:00 UTC Sunday, Jan 17

Traders,

BitMEX will be doing routine maintenance this Sunday at 15 UTC. Because we have to reboot some core systems in order to finish this maintenance, we will be pausing the trading engine from 15:00 to 15:30 UTC.

During this time, BitMEX systems will be unavailable.

We will send notice on Twitter before and after the maintenance.

Transferable Margin on Isolated Positions

BitMEX is happy to announce a new capability: transference of margin in and out of an isolated position. Use this feature to dial leverage up and down as desired.

Using the feature is simple. Simply click the icon next to the margin line-item on an isolated position:

margin11

Then choose an amount to transfer:

margin dialog

After confirmation, note the new margin value, liquidation price, and leverage.

margin2

This feature allows users to choose any leverage between the max (which may be as much as 100x) and their total account balance.

All .XBT Indices Temporarily Moved to Bitstamp

Due to instability, extended downtime, and bad data from Bitfinex, all .XBT indices have been temporarily moved to Bitstamp, where they will remain until Friday. After Friday’s settlement, we will switch to TradeBlock’s .XBX Index.

This switch affects the XBU, XBT, and BVOL-series contracts. ETH is still being settled on Kraken, and XLT (Litecoin) is still being settled on Bitfinex for the time being. We are investigating alternatives.

Site Update: BVOL24H, PGP, and Indices

BitMEX is proud to announce the release of another major upgrade to the BitMEX platform!

We have three major updates this week: the new BVOL24H contract, PGP email support, and UI support for backing indices.

BVOL24H – Daily Volatility

BVOL24H is now live. BVOL24H is a futures contract that allows traders to speculate on the Bitcoin daily historical volatility. The Bitfinex last price is snapped every 5 minutes, and then the standard deviation of the logarithmic change between snaps is calculated. That number is multiplied by the square root of 288 to arrive at a daily volatility. The increased sensitivity to short term price movements makes BVOL24H a great tool in a trader’s arsenal in the quest for alpha in these choppy and sideways markets.

PGP Support

Many of our traders are very serious about security, as they should be. But automatic updates from BitMEX regarding your deposits, withdrawals, and margin status may leak information to your email provider and other parties. While your email server should be using encryption, it is still very possible for emails to be read in transit.

If you are nodding your head in agreement, then you probably already know about PGP. If you have a PGP key, paste your public key into the box in the My Account page. You will be sent a test email immediately so you can check your configuration. From then on, all automated emails will be sent to in encrypted form.

BitMEX Indices

BitMEX contracts have always settled on indices that were generally only published via the API and viewable in limited fashion in the References section. For example, this is the page for .XBT30M, the settlement index for XBU24H.

We have moved the indices to the front page, where index prices are now viewable as a tab in the Instruments panel. Additionally, you can now view the Bitfinex spot price, updated minutely, right in the ticker bar on the top of the page! See the new section on the left side near the series selector.

That’s all for this week. Thanks to all of our traders for being here. Please contract us in the chat or find us on the Whaleclub Teamspeak if you have questions about BVOL24H or any of the new updates.

BitMEX in the News

The following is a gallery of articles about BitMEX in popular media.

Interactive XBU, XBT, and BVOL Pricing Spreadsheets

If you are trading on the XBU, XBT, or BVOL chain, it may be difficult to calculate your PNL or to understand if a contract is under- or over-valued.

To help with this, BitMEX has prepared interactive spreadsheets with live Bitfinex and BitMEX market data to help you price your trades and better understand how each contract behaves. These spreadsheets combine real-time data with adjustable controls and graphing to help you plan your trade.

The spreadsheets outline the differences between XBT and XBU and how they are trading relative to Bitfinex Spot, as well as relative to USD and Bitcoin annualized interest rates. This data can help you make a savvy trade by recognizing when a contract might be under- or over-valued.

All three spreadsheets contain extensive explanation text in the sidebar. If you do not see the sidebar, please log in with your Gmail account, and click the BitMEX Pricing Help menu at the top.

These spreadsheets can be copied into your personal Google Drive and are free to modify for any use.

View Spreadsheets: XBU | XBT | BVOL

The New Hedger / Trader Fee Schedule

New Switchable Fee Preferences

BitMEX has been listening to your feedback, and we are pleased to be the first Bitcoin exchange to offer a two-tier trading fee schedule! This new customization enables BitMEX to meet a wider variety of traders’ needs.

The types available are:

Trader

Some traders want to make fast trades for low fees, react to market movements quickly, and predict trends. For the active trader, BitMEX offers the Trader fee schedule. This fee schedule combines extremely low individual trade fees (0.005%) with a low insurance fee charged at the end of each session to cover margin risk. This is the default choice when creating a new BitMEX account.

  • Flat Trading Fee: 0.005% (0.5 basis points)
  • Insurance Fee: 0.015% (1.5 basis points) per 8-hour trading session

Hedger

The Hedger fee schedule is more traditional for Bitcoin exchanges. It is tailored toward hedgers, arbitrageurs, and those who want to invest long-term without capital loss. This fee schedule is Maker/Taker and has higher trading fees than the Trader schedule, but has no recurring insurance costs. Contracts held under this fee schedule retain their full value until expiration.

If you are hedging Bitcoin liabilities for the duration of a contract’s lifetime, this fee schedule may be more favorable than the Trader schedule.

  • Maker Trading Fee: 0.25% (25 basis points)
  • Taker Trading Fee: 0.50% (50 basis points)

Choosing a Structure

Traders may choose which fee structure to apply to their account on the My Account page when logged in. You may only change your fee preferences when all your outstanding positions are zero.

If you have any concerns, please don’t hesitate to email us.

New Fee Structure: Trading Fees Reduced, Insurance Fees

BitMEX has one of the fastest trading engines and the most complete API of any Bitcoin exchange online. To better leverage this strength, and the will of our customers, we are slashing our normal trading fee dramatically.

The new fee is 0.005% per trade, maker or taker. That’s a 100x reduction over the previous fee. We aim to make day trading and automated trading much more attractive, cutting the cost of trading to near zero.

BitMEX will now be charging an insurance fee on open positions of 0.015% per trading session. This fee offsets the risks taken on by BitMEX by guaranteeing settlements. In the case of trader bankruptcy, BitMEX covers all losses and will not charge traders for the bankruptcy of other traders. BitMEX is the only derivatives exchange that offers this. Existing accounts will not be charged this fee for the time being to allow time to adjust. We will give advance notice before this applies to your account.

If you are interested in using doing automated trading on BitMEX, please see our REST and Websocket API documentation. We also offer a reference Market Making Bot written in Python that works with both Access Tokens and permanent API keys.

We are working on a unified SDK that will add tooling for most major programming languages.

Happy trading.

BitMEX Arbitrage Webinar Recording Now Available

Bitcoin Arbitrage Webinar

On Monday 27 October 2014, BitMEX CEO Arthur Hayes along with Coin Republic’s David Moskowitz hosted an hour long webinar on Bitcoin arbitrage trading. If you were unable to attend the webinar a recording of the event is now available. This is a great opportunity to enhance your understanding of how to use derivatives to lock in arbitrage gains and reduce risk in ways that were previously impossible on the Bitcoin market.

Due to an overwhelming positive response from our first webinar, CEO Arthur Hayes will be hosting a monthly 30 minute webinar on different trading topics. More details about November’s webinar will be provided shortly.