The price of Bitcoin has been on a roller coaster ride for years now. That may give long-term investors anxiety, but this volatility represents an opportunity for some traders. Trading successfully demands that you buy low and sell high, and Bitcoin’s up-and-down price swings provide a large number of dips and peaks.
If you want to get started with Bitcoin trading in Malaysia, this guide covers everything you need to know. We’ll review the top Bitcoin trading platforms, explain how the Bitcoin market works in Malaysia, and cover some basic strategies you can use to get started.
How to Trade Bitcoin in Malaysia in 3 Steps
Want to start trading Bitcoin right away? Follow these three steps to get started:
Step 1: Open a Trading Account
Open a trading account with a broker, such as eToro, that offers Bitcoin trading.
Step 2: Deposit Funds
Fund your Bitcoin trading account using a credit or debit card, bank transfer, or e-wallet.
Step 3: Trade Bitcoin Today
Decide how much money you want to invest and begin trading Bitcoin.
75% of retail investors lose money when trading CFDs with this provider. Crypto assets are highly volatile unregulated investment products.
Step 1: Choose a Bitcoin Trading Platform
In order to start trading Bitcoin, you’ll need to find a Bitcoin trading platform that suits you. Choosing the best cryptocurrency broker or exchange is essential, since it controls what trading options are available to you, how much you’ll pay for trading, and what tools you’ll have at your disposal.
To help you out, we’ve reviewed the five best Bitcoin trading platforms for Maylasia residents in 2020.
1. eToro – Market Leading Social Bitcoin Broker
Founded in 2007, eToro is now one of the biggest crypto trading sites in the world. One of the best things about trading on eToro is that it allows you to both buy Bitcoin and trade CFDs, something which isn’t available at most other brokers.
With 0% commission and tight spreads, eToro is one of the most competitive platforms when it comes to Bitcoin trading fees. There is also a withdrawal fee of MYR 20 ($5) when you decide to cash out.
This broker recently introduced eToroX, which is a fully regulated crypto exchange that offers Bitcoin trading, and it also has a proprietary cryptocurrency wallet, available as an iOS and Android mobile app, which you can use to securely store, send and receive Bitcoin.
eToro is well known as a social trading broker, which allows you to interact with other users. It also offers innovative copy trading tools, which allow you to copy the entire portfolios of top Bitcoin traders with the click of a button, so it’s an excellent platform for both beginners and experienced traders.
You can get started with a deposit of MYR 850 ($200), which you can make via bank card, bank transfer or e-wallet, such as PayPal. There’s also a $100,000 demo account you can try out. Licensed by tier-one regulatory bodies like the FCA, ASIC and CySEC, eToro is one of the safest Bitcoin trading platforms around.
- Easy to Use: Clean and simple interface for beginners
- Social Trading: See what other crypto traders are buying
- Built-in Wallet: Store Bitcoin in a secure eToro wallet
- High Fees: Withdrawal and inactivity fees
2. Plus500 – Excellent Proprietary Bitcoin Trading Platform
Founded in 2008, Plus500 is one of the leading cryptocurrency CFD brokers. It does not charge trade commissions and its spreads for Bitcoin trades are very competitive, which makes it a popular choice among Malaysian Bitcoin traders. The platform also allows you to trade a Bitcoin-Ethereum blend that provides exposure to both cryptocurrencies.
This broker offers a proprietary trading platform with a user-friendly interface and excellent customer service. The charting tools come with price alerts and an economic calendar, although advanced traders may be disappointed to find that Plus500’s platform doesn’t enable you to create custom technical studies.
Plus500 offers a Standard trading account that requires a £100 (MYR 541.70) deposit. There is also a free demo account so you can practice your Bitcoin trading strategy before committing real money to your trades, as well as an app for mobile trading.
The platform is regulated by multiple agencies such as the UK’s FCA, Cypress’s CySEC and Australia’s ASIC. Its clients’ funds are segregated in separate accounts, and all personal information is automatically transferred through Secured Socket Layer (SSL). All in all, that means you don’t have to worry about security when trading Bitcoin with this broker.
- Affordable: No commission & tight spreads
- Excellent Service: Reliable customer support
- Trustworthy: Regulated by multiple agencies
- Limited Platform: Minimal advanced research tools
3. AvaTrade – Trade Bitcoin with Low Spreads
AvaTrade is a well-established online broker that accepts clients from a vast range of regions, including Malaysia. It is regulated by reputable regulatory agencies such as ASIC in Australia, the FCA in the UK, and the IIROC in Canada. That means it is one of the most trustworthy and competent Bitcoin trading platforms on the market.
One of the best things about AvaTrade is that it offers highly competitive spreads, with users able to trade Bitcoin with spreads as low as 0.45%. Recently, it slashed cryptocurrency spreads by 50%, making it one of the most attractive platforms for active traders. You can trade Bitcoin with 1:2 leverage on this platform.
AvaTrade keeps things simple by providing only two account types. There is the Standard account that requires an initial minimum deposit of MYR 400 ($100) and a Swap-free account that is ideal for Malaysian Muslim traders. It also offers a free demo account that can help you practice and test your strategies before using them on the live market.
AvaTrade users can get access to its proprietary platform, AvaTradeAct, along with MetaTrader 4 (MT4) and MetaTrader 5 (MT5). The brokerage offers nine different cryptocurrencies, including Bitcoin. You can deposit and withdraw funds through bank wire transfer, credit/debit cards, PayPal, Skrill, Neteller and WebMoney, and there’s no banking fees to worry about.
- Low Cost: Tight Bitcoin spreads
- Multiple Platforms: Proprietary, MT4 & MT5
- Muslim Friendly: Swap-free account
- Slow Withdrawals: Takes a few days to get funds
4. IG – Bitcoin CFDs Broker with Crypto 10 Index
IG is a reputable broker that offers excellent access to the cryptocurrency market. You can trade CFDs for Bitcoin and seven other popular cryptocurrencies, as well as a custom Crypto 10 index that tracks the performance of the 10 top coins by market capitalization. There’s no commission for Bitcoin trading on IG, and the spreads are competitive, starting from 1 for cryptocurrencies.
This broker offers a proprietary trading platform that is available for desktop, mobile, and web interfaces. It is fully customizable with a clean and informative interface, and comes equipped with an extensive charting package. In addition, it features streaming market coverage with analytics, alerts and signals. There is also a feature that will enable you to automate your trading strategies. Alternatively, you can use the MetaTrader 4 or ProRealTime platforms that IG is compatible with.
The process of opening an IG trading account is straightforward. There is no minimum deposit for bank transfers but you need at least MYR 1,200($300) for credit/debit cards and PayPal. Note that the broker charges a fee of MYR 40 ($12) per month after two years of inactivity.
This broker is regulated by nearly every major regulatory agency in the world, including the FCA in the UK, ASIC in Australia, and JFSA in Japan. Plus, it is publicly traded on the FTSE 250, so it has to release quarterly reports about its internal finances. Clients’ funds are also segregated from the broker’s funds to minimize the potential for misuse.
- Risk Management: Offers tools to help your profit
- Excellent Design: Easy to use platform
- No Minimums: No minimum deposit for bank transfer
- Inactivity fee: Pay MYR 40 per month after two years without trades
5. Coinbase: Bitcoin Exchange with Over 10m Users
Coinbase is slightly different from the other Bitcoin trading platforms on this list in that it’s a cryptocurrency exchange rather than a broker. This platform is one of the world’s largest and most trusted exchanges, couting over 10 million customers and more than $40 billion worth of crypto transactions.
Coinbase allows users to buy and sell Bitcoin, along with many other cryptocurrencies, via a range of payment methods, including debit cards, credit cards and PayPal. It also supports Bitcoin trading against fiat currencies like the USD.
The fees aren’t the cheapest on the market—1.5%–4%—depending on the transaction method, but Coinbase provides an easy and secure way to trade Bitcoin. It’s licensed in many states across the US, so you can trade Bitcoin in confidence.
Finally, Coinbase offers cryptocurrency wallets via the excellent Coinbase Wallet mobile app, available on iOS and Android devices. This allows you to manage your Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies in a secure, user-friendly environment.
- Trusted: Over 10 million users
- Mobile Wallet App: Securely store your Bitcoin
- Choice of Payment Methods: Accepts PayPal
- Fees: Higher than some other platforms
Step 2: Learn How the Bitcoin Market Works in Malaysia
Before you jump straight into trading Bitcoin, it’s a good idea to understand how the market for this cryptocurrency works. Here, we’ll cover everything you need to know before trading Bitcoin in Malaysia.
What is Bitcoin?
Bitcoin was the world’s first digital currency, also known as a cryptocurrency. It was introduced in 2008 by an anonymous developer known as Satoshi Nakamoto. Since then, it has gone on to firmly establish itself as the world’s leading cryptocurrency.
Only 21 million Bitcoins will ever be created. The algorithm that controls the creation of Bitcoin also limits the quantity and rate of production. Thanks to this limitation, Bitcoin is considered a finite and valuable commodity like gold or crude oil.
The first Bitcoin exchange was established in 2010 and it enabled ordinary people to buy BTC using traditional currencies. At that time, 1 BTC was only worth 0.012 MYR ($0.003). In 2017, it almost reached the MYR87,000 ($20,000) mark.
The media has played a massive role in Bitcoin’s volatility. Every time there is a breaking story that affects the global economy, BTC’s price can shoot up or spiral downward. That has enabled a lot of traders and speculators to make immense profits from the crypto market.
Bitcoin is increasingly becoming a preferred payment method for international remittances, local money transfers and trading purposes. It is enjoying widespread popularity across Malaysia, despite the fact that it is not controlled by the government or banks like traditional currencies are.
What is Bitcoin trading?
While it originated as a decentralized payment method that’s not regulated by any bank or governing body, the past decade has seen Bitcoin become of significant interest to many traders and investors. This includes both short-term traders, who look to take advantage of Bitcoin’s notorious volatility to make quick gains, and long-term traders, who keep hold of Bitcoin with the aim of seeing its value rise significantly.
When it comes to trading, you can do this either on trading brokers, such as forex brokers, or cryptocurrency exchanges. Bitcoin works similar to forex trading, as it’s traded against other currencies. These can be fiat currencies like the US dollar, or other digital currencies such as Ethereum.
You can choose to either buy Bitcoin and purchase the underlying asset, or trade contacts for difference (CFDs). CFD trading allows you to trade without owning any Bitcoin, and it also allows you to trade with leverage, meaning you borrow capital from a broker to make larger trades.
Is Bitcoin Available in Malaysia?
Bitcoin is fully available in Malaysia. The government has taken a largely neutral approach to cryptocurrency trading and has already approved a handful of cryptocurrency exchanges to operate in the country.
In fact, a recent study showed that Malaysia is one of the countries with the highest interest in cryptocurrencies in the ASEAN region. The survey found out that 55% of Malaysians are familiar with blockchain technology, while 39% of them have used cryptocurrencies at some point.
What Regulations are in Place for Trading Bitcoin in Malaysia?
Malaysia is one of the latest countries that have begun to roll out a framework to control digital currencies. Now, cryptocurrencies are recognized as securities and regulated by the Securities Commission Malaysia (SCM).
Cryptocurrency regulations were introduced around January 2019. The government required crypto exchanges and initial coin offerings (ICOs) to register with SCM and other relevant agencies. Failing to do so is punishable by a 10-year jail sentence and a maximum of MYR 2.4 million in fines.
The government has clarified that Bitcoin should be treated as a security and not a legal tender. However, you can still use it as a means of payment to buy goods and services. The move to regulate digital currencies is aimed at boosting the adoption of cryptocurrencies in the country.
What Risks are Involved with Bitcoin Trading in Malaysia?
Digital currencies are considered to be the future of financial exchange and transactions. Despite Bitcoin’s increased popularity across Malaysia, there are some still serious risks that you should know before trying out cryptocurrency trading.
- Volatility – The biggest risk to trading Bitcoin in Malaysia is that the price of this currency can rise and fall quickly and without warning. As an example, in early 2017, 1 BTC was worth around MYR 2,800 ($700). It climbed to MYR 80,000 ($20,000) by the end of 2017, then precipitously dropped in value to just MYR 24,000 ($6000) in a matter of months. On a day to day basis, this volatility can make Bitcoin trading very stressful. If the price of Bitcoin drops after your buy it, you will either have to hold onto it until the price rises again—which could take months or years—or you will have to sell it for a loss. The Bitcoin market is very unpredictable and it is difficult to know if you will see a return on your investment.
- Security – Bitcoin is a digital coin and as such your currency isn’t held at highly secure banks. Instead, it’s held inside Bitcoin wallets. These are highly secure in that only you have the encryption key to move coins in and out of your wallet. However, you have to be constantly aware of cyber attacks that could expose your Bitcoin wallet. A phishing attack could steal your encryption key, for example, and there’s no way to recover lost or stolen Bitcoins. When using a cryptocurrency exchange or broker, make sure that your account is highly secure.
Can I Buy Bitcoin from an ATM in Malaysia?
It is possible to obtain Bitcoins using cash from an automated teller machine (ATM) in Malaysia. At the moment, there are reportedly 10 Bitcoin ATMs in the country, with six of them located in Kuala Lumpur.
The advantage of buying Bitcoins through the ATM is that you will not be required to go through the verification process. That means you have the option of staying mostly anonymous when exchanging cash for Bitcoin. On the downside, you should be prepared to incur high transaction fees that range between 5% and 10% when using a Bitcoin ATM.
How Do Trading and Investing in Bitcoin Differ from Each Other?
There is a big difference between investing and trading Bitcoins.
When you invest in Bitcoin, you’re in holding it for the long-haul. No matter how the price changes in the market, Bitcoin investors do not give up on their investment. Instead, they hold the assets until there is a perfect moment to sell. Investing in Bitcoin is best if you firmly believe in the potential for digital currencies and believe that, no matter the short-term fluctuations, the price of Bitcoin will steadily rise in the long run.
On the contrary, Bitcoin trading is a short-term endeavor. Bitcoin traders only hold the currency for a short period, on the order of a few minutes to a few days, in order to take advantage of small price movements. Bitcoin’s roller-coaster price fluctuations make it perfect for trading because there are so many dips and peaks to profit off of, although this also means there is increased risk.
Step 3: Choose a Bitcoin Trading Strategy
The key to turning a profit from Bitcoin trading is to have a winning strategy and to stick to it. Your trading strategy is a methodology that you use when identifying entry and exit points.
There are many Bitcoin trading strategies, and you need to choose one that aligns to your objectives, available capital and appetite for risk . Below are some of the most common strategies that you can consider using.
Day trading involves keeping positions open for just a number of minutes or hours, and rarely more than a day. The aim of Bitcoin day trading is to make small but frequent gains when the price of Bitcoin fluctuates throughout the trading day. Bitcoin is often considered as an asset that’s well suited to day trading due to its volatility.
Scalping is a short-term, yet extremely intense trading strategy. The goal here is to earn small profits by initiating trades and then closing them very quickly. Scalpers aim to make money off the price changes that happen in the span of seconds, rather than hours or days. Since you will be entering and exiting the market regularly, it is imperative to consider the spreads per Bitcoin trade that your broker will charge you.
Swing trading is another short-term strategy, but one that operates on the order of days to weeks. With swing trading, your goal is to look for changes in momentum and act on them. When Bitcoin begins to rebound after a dip, for example, you can initiate a swing trade to profit from the early part of the ensuing rise when the upward price momentum is strongest.
Also known as HODLing in the cryptocurrency community, this is perhaps the most common long-term Bitcoin trading strategy. It involves maintaining a long position with the hope that the price will continue to rise as the demand for this coin increases and supply diminishes as mining gets more difficult. Holding as a trading strategy is very similar to Bitcoin investing.
Beware that Bitcoin is highly volatile, so this strategy could lead to significant losses if you are not careful. It’s a good idea to set a maximum amount that you’re willing to lose and then commit to selling some or all of your Bitcoin at that lower price if the currency drops.
This strategy involves entering the market at key points and riding the trend from start to finish. It is based on the idea that once the market breaks through major resistance and support levels, significant volatility will occur.
To trade a Bitcoin breakout, you must first identify key price levels. You’ll need to rely heavily on technical charts for this, as well as to set price targets so you know when to exit your trade.
Step 4: Open a Bitcoin Trade
Now you’re ready to start trading Bitcoin. To walk you through the process, we’ll illustrate the main steps using eToro. We like eToro because it offers its own digital wallet, has 0% commission and allows you to interact with other Bitcoin traders. To learn more, check out our eToro Malaysia review.
If you use a different Bitcoin trading platform, the process remains similar.
Create an Account and Verify Your Identity
To start trading BTC on eToro, you need to create an account first. All you need to do is to provide your name, email, and phone number, and create a username and password. You can also opt to sign up through your Google or Facebook account.
Due to regulatory requirements, eToro requires you to verify your identity and address. To prove your identity, you will have to provide a copy of your government-issued card, passport or driver’s license. For proof of address, you can use a recent utility bill or bank statement.
The minimum initial deposit on eToro is MYR 800 ($200), which you can deposit through a wide range of ways such as bank transfer, credit/debit card, Skrill, PayPal, and Neteller. Keep in mind that eToro supports only the US Dollar as the base currency, which means you will incur a conversion fee if you deposit funds using Malaysian ringgit.
After funding your account, you can start to trade Bitcoin. Search for ‘Bitcoin’ in the navigation bar and click on ‘Trade’ when Bitcoin appears in the drop-down menu.
Click ‘Trade’ to open the order form and select buy or sell depending on whether you want to purchase the underlying asset or trade a CFD. Then simply set the trade parameters and click ‘Open Trade’ Once you’re happy.
Pros and Cons of Bitcoin Trading
- Volatility—Creates many trading opportunities
- Liquidity—More liquid than other cryptocurrencies
- Acceptance—Buy and sell the asset or trade CFDs
- Inexpensive—Lower transactions fees compared to fiat currencies
- Scarcity—Bitcoin will become less available as mining gets harder
- Financial Risk—High-risk asset due to price volatility
- Security Risks—Exposure to specific scams and fraud
Bitcoin’s volatile price makes it a target for short-term traders who see opportunity in roller coaster price action, while its global popularity as a finite cryptocurrency also makes it an asset of interest to long-term investors. However, as a highly volatile asset, you should make sure you understand the market, know the risks and develop a strategy before putting your money on the line.
If you do want to begin Bitcoin trading in Malaysia, we recommend signing up with our recommended broker, eToro. With 0% commission, innovative copy trading tools and the ability to buy Bitcoin or trade CFDs, eToro ticks every box. Simply click the link below to get started today.
eToro: Best Malaysia Bitcoin Trading Platform 2020
- 0% commission Bitcoin trading
- Buy and sell Bitcoin or trade CFDs
- Social trading & copy trading tools
- Strictly regulated
To ensure we bring you the most reliable and accurate information possible, our writers use primary sources to support their content. These include studies, government resources and commentary from industry experts.
Bank Negara Malaysia. “Statement on Bitcoin.” https://www.bnm.gov.my/index.php?ch=en_announcement&pg=en_announcement&ac=49&lang=en. Accessed June 8, 2020.
Bank Negara Malaysia. “Digital Currency.” https://www.bnm.gov.my/index.php?ch=en_digital_currency&lang=en. Accessed June 8, 2020.
Securities Commission Malaysia. “Media Statement on Initial Coin Offerings.” https://www.sc.com.my/resources/media-releases-and-announcements/media-statement-on-initial-coin-offerings. Accessed June 8, 2020.
What can I use Bitcoin for in Malaysia?
There are many ways you can use Bitcoins. For instance, you can keep it as a long-term investment, which is popular among Malaysians. You can also use it to pay for products and services in numerous outlets across the country. It has become a preferred method among Malaysians working abroad to send money back home.
How do I get Bitcoin in Malaysia?
There are two main ways you can obtain Bitcoin in Malaysia: mining and buying. Although it is possible to mine Bitcoins in Malaysia, it is not a viable option for most people because you need very expensive equipment. The easiest and fastest way to obtain Bitcoins is to buy them through a reputable broker or exchange.
What should I know before buying Bitcoin?
The first thing you should know is that Bitcoin is a high-risk investment. The price of Bitcoin can rise and fall quickly and without warning. In addition, you should also know that Bitcoin transactions are irreversible. So, you must always confirm the details before you buy, sell, or transfer coins.
Can I make money trading Bitcoin?
Yes, you can make money trading Bitcoin. However, you have to time the Bitcoin market right to buy low and sell high. Successful cryptocurrency traders always practice, read news related to the crypto market and use advanced tools to make better trading decisions.
What is the best crypto wallet that I should use?
The best crypto wallet for you will depend on how you want to use your Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. It is advisable to have multiple wallets so that in case you lose access to one, you won’t lose all your crypto assets. To get started, you can use your broker or cryptocurrency exchange as your wallet.