Japan’s bitFlyer exchange making changes to margin trading platform

bitFlyer, one of the largest cryptocurrency exchanges in Japan, is set to implement some changes in its margin trading platform. The exchange cited the recent regulations set by the Japan Virtual Currency Exchange Association as the reason for the changes. Initially, these changes were scheduled for implementation on April 22. However, the exchange announced that it had changed the implementation date to May 28 during maintenance of its platform.

The first change involves the maximum leverage allowed when placing new orders. bitFlyer currently allows its users a 15x leverage. However, after the maintenance, the leverage will come down to 4x. Users who have set a leverage rate exceeding that will have their leverage setting set to 4x.

The exchange will also raise the margin maintenance rate for triggering margin calls. The rate currently stands at 80 percent but after maintenance, bitFlyer will raise it to 100 percent. As per the announcement, “Customers whose maintenance margin rate falls below 100 percent at the point in time when the changes are implemented will experience a margin call.”

The third change involves the time a user is allowed to make supplemental margin deposits after a margin call. Currently, it stands at 3 bank business days. The exchange will reduce this to two bank business days.

The changes by bitFlyer come two months after Japanese financial regulators reportedly approved draft amendments that sought to limit leverage in crypto margin trading. Previously, the exchanges have operated in a regulatory utopia where they have offered as much leverage as they wished. The regulators felt that this was not feasible in the long term and would only hurt the traders.

According to a report by local outlet Nikkei, the new regulations are expected to come to force in April 2020. However, crypto exchanges have had to be on their toes. This is because the regulations require them to register with the Financial Services Agency (FSA) 18 months prior. This is meant to ensure the FSA has enough time to crack down on illegitimate exchanges. The regulator’s intention was to level margin trading in crypto with other financial markets such as forex trading where it ranges between 2 and 4%.

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