Ethereum (ETH) has for the longest time been an afterthought in the crypto market, consistently lagging far behind its more prestigious rival, Bitcoin. The coronavirus pandemic and the financial downturns that followed it were almost a godsend for ETH, whose valuation rose from $134 per coin in March 2020 to an all-time high price of $4,933 in December 2021.
If you are looking to own a piece of the increasingly valuable coin, then you are at the right place. In this article, we will take you through all the steps involved in buying ethereum in Australia and even recommend the best platforms to work with.
Ethereum/ETHUSD live price chart from Mitrade▼
Australians who wish to buy ETH can do so in several ways, with each method carrying its own risks, challenges, and opportunities. Below are four of the most credible crypto purchase channels:
■ 1. Crypto Exchanges
The best way to buy ethereum overall is via a credible online exchange such as Coinjar, Swyftx, and Coinspot. These crypto exchanges are user regulated (that is, you can find legit user reviews about them everywhere on the internet) and allow you to trade using AUD, which means you save on currency conversion costs. Above all, you can buy and sell your ETH any time you want, based on that particular day's prices.
Cryptocurrency exchanges generally fall under two categories: centralized and decentralized.
→ Centralized exchanges are run by a single exchange operator who keeps the platforms running smoothly by facilitating user sign up, removing scam accounts, and linking sellers to buyers. This kind of exchanges is consequently the most popular as users don't have to do much by themselves. The only downside is that they charge transaction fees, which can run into hundreds of AUD if you are a big trader.
→ Decentralized exchanges, on the other hand, have no third-party oversight and are more like social networks where sellers advertise their wares and buyers choose who to buy from. Due to the lack of a common system, prices in DEX vary from seller to seller, which makes it some form of a buyer's market. The downside is that you need a very high level of technical skills and knowledge of crypto to effectively survive in a decentralized exchange.
■ 2. Peer to Peer Networks
Another very popular way of buying ethereum in Australia is via peer-to-peer networks, also known as P2P. Here, users trade ETH directly with each other, at their own rates, and with zero fees (quite similar to DEXs). Basically, buyers find sellers that they like, contact them and after reaching agreements, transfer money to their (sellers') accounts. After confirming receipt of the money, the seller dispatches the crypto to the buyer's wallet.
So, what if a seller refuses to send ETH after receiving the cash?
Well, that rarely happens as most P2P platforms have escrow systems that hold the sellers' funds until buyers confirm receipt of the crypto.
Above all, there are no KYC procedures in P2P platforms, which means you can sign up and instantly get to buy or sell your ETH. Certified buyers write reviews on sellers and the sellers with the most positive reviews get to rank higher on the marketplace.
■ 3. ATMs and Credit Cards
While most Australian ethereum exchanges do not accept credit card payments for security reasons, Australians can use their "plastic money" to purchase ETH on international exchanges and P2Ps. However, the charges of doing so may be quite high (sometimes even higher than direct bank payments) and transactions may be subject to monthly or daily limits. For instance, Coinmama has a fixed payment fee of 5.00% and a monthly limit of $20,000, which effectively locks out big rollers.
■ 4. Crypto CFDs
A Contract for Difference (CFD) is basically a speculative transaction where you "buy" or "sell" ETH based on how they think the price will move. If you have a buy position, you will make a profit when the price of the ETH increases and vice versa for a sell position.
As you can tell, CFDs are purely based on speculations about price movements and traders don't assume any ownership of the traded crypto. Trade crypto CFD may be a flexible way for active traders.
Now you probably know HOW to buy Ethereum in Australia and beyond. In this section, we will see WHERE you can buy the cryptocurrency based on each of the above methods.
1. Best Ethereum Exchanges in Australia
The aptly named Coinbase exchange is arguably the best crypto exchange available to Aussies. Having launched in 2012, the site is available in 100+ other countries, including the USA, UK, and Canada, and offers both brokerage and exchange services.
Another pioneer exchange is CoinMama, which launched in 2013 and offers dedicated brokerage and exchange services for Ethereum, Bitcoin, and other cryptos. Like Coinbase, CoinMama is a centralized exchange and it also buys and sells ETH at a premium.
Bitfinex is an up-and-coming exchange that allows users to freely exchange ETH and other cryptos in real-time. It also provides Margin funding for traders who are short on cash and wish to trade on leverage. However, we wouldn't encourage inexperienced traders to take this route, as the potential losses are massive.
Other notable and credible exchanges include; Poloniex, Swyftx, Kranex, Cex.io, and Bittrex.
2. Best P2P Platforms
If you love unencumbered ETH trading, you can check out any of the following P2P trading and lending platforms for amazing offers:
• LocalBitcoins - One of the largest P2P networks for crypto and arguably the best place to buy Ethereum in and out of Australia. Offers escrow services to ensure buyer protection, plus doesn't require ID verification for ETH purchases of up to €1,000 per year.
• Bitquick - The best choice for instant transactions (less than a minute on average) and also offers full support for cash payments.
• LocalCryptos - A relatively new, non-custodial P2P network that supports over 40 payment methods, escrow services, and message encryption.
• LocalCoinSwaps - Offers ETH, BTC, and USDC cryptos and supports 250+ payment options, not to mention full escrow protection. The site is also available worldwide and doesn't ask for ID verification.
• Paxful - One of the most legit crypto trading platforms in the market. Allows you to trade up to $1,500 without KYC compliance and also offers escrow functionality.
3. Best Platforms for ATM and Credit Card Purchases
Buying ETH with credit cards can be quite an expensive hassle, but things are increasingly becoming better with the rise of exchanges and P2P platforms that support ATM (bank) and credit card purchases. These include:
• Coinbase - Yep, this amazing exchange also supports easy and fast credit cards payments on ETH.
•Trust Wallet - As its name suggests, this is primarily a secure platform to store your acquired ETH and other digital assets. But most notably, the site allows you to buy between $50 and $20,000 worth of Ethereum using your ATM or credit card from other users, or exchanges.
4. Best Places to Buy Ethereum on CFD
CFD ( Contract For Difference), is a popular way to trade on the cryptocurrency price moves. CFD allows you to go long or go short on financial markets over a very short-term, with leverage and margin. If you think the ETH price is about to rise, you buy an ETH CFD contract, If the price rises, you will make a profit.
Due to the low levels of sophistication and regulatory compliance it takes to provide CFDs, you can typically find Ethereum CFDs on almost every online forex or stock trading platform. These include IG, Oanda, AvaTrade, and Mitrade.
Here are the cryptocurrency trading platforms that provide Ethereum. ( Note that this list of crypto brokers/platforms is just for reference. There are still many other good choices outside our list and they may be more suitable for you than anyone on our list. This list is also in no particular order. )
● Simple and easy-to-use trading platform
● Free risk management tools such as stop-loss/negative capital protection
● No transaction fees, low spreads
● Quick account opening process
● Only CFDs
MiTrade is an Australian CFD broker. It is regulated by the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC), license 398528. Mitrade provides leverage from 1 to 10 to trade crypto with a minimum trading volume of 0.01 lots, so you will start trading with small capitals. And Mitrade spreads are very low that helps investors reduce transaction costs.
● Good brand reputation
● Very friendly to newbies, courtesy of the copy trading feature
● Support for 20+ payment methods
● No option to buy real ETH
One of the world's biggest online trading platforms, eToro should definitely be among your options. It is regulated in 3 jurisdictions and offers both CFDs and the actual ETH. Its social copy trading feature makes it very popular among newbies.
● Wide range of crypto products
● Supports Australian bank transfers, BPAY, Swipe, Credit Card and Cash payments
● Intuitive, easy to use platform
● Not licensed in Australia
CoinJar Australia is a massive crypto exchange with over 350,000 regular users. It provides a fast, secure and intuitive way to buy Ethereum via your phone or computer and supports multiple payment methods.
● A highly popular global Exchange with millions of users
● Supports 100+ Australian banks
● Zero transaction fees
● Seamless mobile app
● Not ideal for inexperienced traders
Binance is among the largest crypto exchanges in the world by trading volume and its subsequently one of the best places to buy Ethereum in Australia. Indeed, its Australian subsidiary offers 200+ crypto pairs and is integrated with 100 Aussie financial institutions, which means faster and cheaper transactions. Transaction costs range from 0% to 0.1% on larger transfers.
5. Swyftx Exchange
● Low fees
● Allows trading in AUD
● Over 200 cryptocurrencies are available
● Host to a large community of Australian traders
● Charges 0.6% on every transaction, which is quite high
If convenience is what you're after, then Swyftx is the platform for you. Based in Australia, the site offers both Ethereum trading facilities and an online wallet to store-bought coins. A growing collection of 100,000+ users means you will always find very good deals and credible sellers.
6. Independent Reserve
● Super friendly platform for Australian traders
● Supports fiat payments
● Credible and reliable Australia-based platform
● Not Regulated
The platform primarily caters to Australian and New Zealand traders and offers the 3 major digital currencies; Ethereum to Bitcoin and Litecoin. And although its key currencies are AUD and USD, Independent Reserve also accepts customers from 197 other countries and supports cash, EFT, credit card, and e-wallet payments.
7. Digital Surge
● Extremely easy to use platform
● Supports AUD payments
● Fully regulated by ASIC and AUSTRAC
● 24/7 support
● Relatively small user base
This Brisbane-based platform provides an easy, straightforward, and state way to buy and sell Ethereum using AUD and even Bitcoin. Its main selling point is the simplicity it offers through its beginner-friendly functions, ranging from instant payments, quick registration and verification, to a step-by-step guide through the buying and selling processes.
● SSL and Two Factor Authentication enhance assure of transactions
● Is primarily designed for Australian players and supports AUD payments
● Very low fees (0.1% per transaction)
● No mobile app
Also based in Australia, CoinSpot is a decentralized crypto exchange that allows P2P exchange of Ethereum and 100+ other digital currencies. It accepts deposits and withdrawals via a range of payment methods, including BPAY, POLi transfers, and cash deposits.
● Offers many payment options
● Quick verification
● Top-notch buyer protection with escrow
● Very high fees for card payments
Although it doesn't support many crypto assets, CoinMama offers full support for ETH and other top assets like BTC, BCH and XRP and has over 2 million users spread across 180+ countries.
● Hosts a lot of ETH sellers
● Support the most common payment methods
● Easy to use web platform
● Does not support AUD
Bittrex fast-growing global crypto trading platform with 150+ digital currencies available. It supports PayPal, credit card, cash and BTC payments in USD and EUR form and has a fairly large community, which guarantees a large variety of offers.
Step1. Choose the Trading Method and Relevant Platform
Do you wish to buy your Ether from an Exchange or P2P network? Do you want to fully own the asset, or just want to benefit from its price movements? Your answers to this question should inform the choice of platform to use, as outlined in the above sections.
Step2. Create an Account
After identifying a suitable platform, open an account and provide your identification documents as requested then wait for verification.
Step3. Fund the Account
Check out the payment methods supported by your preferred platform then use the one most convenient to you to deposit currency to your new account. Take note of the fees involved while at it.
Step4. Purchase ETH
Look through the exchange for a suitable offer then enter into trades/purchase your preferred amount of ETH.
Step5. Withdraw Your Coins
Immediately you receive your bought Ether, you need to withdraw it to a safe wallet (preferably offline) for safekeeping. Some exchanges may require you to first exchange the ETH for fiat money which you can then send to your bank account.
What is the best Ethereum Wallet?
In our informed opinion, the best and most secure Ethereum wallet is the Trezor Wallet, which was also the first-ever crypto wallet. It is a hardware wallet and is thus much safer than regular online wallets due to the fact that the private keys are stored physically on the device and thus out of the reach of hackers and malicious people.
How to Sell Ethereum?
The steps involved in selling ETH are almost the same as in buying it. Basically:
1. Create an account on a platform that lists Ethereum
2. Transfer your ETH from your wallet to the platform
3. Go to the marketplace and click the 'Sell' button
4. Enter the amount of ETH you wish to sell
5. Review the details and the transaction
Is Ethereum Taxed in Australia?
No. Buying and holding Ethereum (or any other digital currency) does not attract any taxes in Australia. However, if you use crypto as an investment, you may be required to pay capital gains tax on any profits made, just like you would with stocks and other investments.
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The content presented above, whether from a third party or not, is considered as general advice only. This article should not be construed as containing investment advice, investment recommendations, an offer of or solicitation for any transactions in financial instruments. *CFD trading carries a high level of risk and is not suitable for all investors. Please read the PDS before choosing to start trading.
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