Coinbase to phase out merchant-friendly “Pro” exchange

Coinbase today announced plans to discontinue its advanced, merchant-focused Coinbase Pro service by the end of the year.

The standalone Pro service, which exists independently of Coinbase.com, offered lower fees for traders who interacted directly with the Coinbase Exchange order book. It will be replaced by Advanced Trade, a service that offers comparable functionality but will live in the main Coinbase app and site.

While Coinbase.com is much more user-friendly and accessible to retail users than Coinbase Pro, it charges a fixed transaction fee on top of each transaction, as well as a percentage commission fee, or spreads. For this reason, many power users have executed trades on the more technical Coinbase Pro and then transferred funds to their Coinbase.com accounts at no cost.

In a blog post todayhowever, Coinbase cited duplicate functionality and “friction” when transferring balances between Coinbase.com and Coinbase Pro as the reason for the latter’s lag.

Coinbase Pro users took to Twitter this afternoon to lament the shutdown of the service, with many citing its lower fees.

However, the company has committed to following the Coinbase Pro pricing structure in the new Advanced Trade section of Coinbase.com. Advanced Trade is already live for desktop users, and Coinbase plans to roll out a mobile version of the functionality in the Coinbase app in the coming weeks.

The news comes as cryptocurrency exchanges race to retain users and mitigate the damage of the current brutal bear market. Just today, Coinbase rival BinanceUS announced that it was eliminating all trading fees on Bitcoin transactions made with US dollar-backed stablecoins.

Shortly after its rival announced, Coinbase stock fell nearly 10% today to $51.80. Since January, the stock of America’s most popular cryptocurrency exchange has lost nearly 80% of its value.

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