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BitMEX: The Bitcoin Mercantile Exchange

What is BitMEX?

BitMEX is a trading platform that offers investors access to the global financial markets using Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. BitMEX is built by finance professionals with over 40 years of combined experience and offers a comprehensive API and supporting tools. BitMEX is owned by HDR Global Trading Limited.


What is a Perpetual Contract?

A Perpetual Contract is a product similar to a traditional Futures Contract in how it trades, but does not have an expiry, so you can hold a position for as long as you like. Perpetual Contracts trade like spot, tracking the underlying Index Price closely. It achieves this via the mechanics of a Funding component.

What is a Futures contract?

A Futures Contract is an agreement to buy or sell a commodity, currency or other instrument at a predetermined price at a specified time in the future.

What maturity does BitMEX offer on its contracts?

BitMEX offers perpetual contracts and many different fixed-date expiries.

What is the Mark Price?

The Mark Price is the price at which the contract is marked for Unrealised PNL and Liquidation purposes.

How are BitMEX indices calculated?

BitMEX indices are calculated using a weighted average of last Prices. See BitMEX indices.

How does BitMEX determine the price of a perpetual or futures contract?

BitMEX marks contracts according to the Fair Price Marking Method. This price determines your Unrealised PNL. Realised PNL will be determined according to your entry price and your exit or Settlement Price and any fees incurred.

How is the Settlement Price calculated?

The Settlement Price is the price at which a Futures contract settles. To avoid price manipulation, BitMEX employs an averaging over a period of time prior to settlement and this time frame may vary from instrument to instrument. Please reference each contracts’ specification that you wish to trade.

How do I Buy or Sell a perpetual or future contract?

In the Trade tab, on the “Place Order” section you can specify the quantity, price and direction.

What is Lot Size?

Lot Size (in number of contracts) is the minimum trading unit and minimum position unit of a contract. Order quantity and position size need to be exact multiples of the contract’s Lot Size. Order quantity not in multiples of Lot Size will be rejected. Please refer to individual contract specification page for each contract’s Lot Size.

For example, a contract with Lot Size of 100 would allow order quantities of 100, 200, 500, or 1000 contracts but would reject quantities of 1, 5, 10, 35, 125, or 250 contracts. Similarly, a user may have a position size of 100, 200, 500, or 1000 contracts but not 1, 5, 10, 35, 125, or 250 contracts.

From time to time it may be necessary to increase the Lot Size for a contract. In this situation orders and positions may be rounded down to the nearest Lot Size, meaning that the “odd lot” portion of the position will be closed out.

What is a Bid and an Ask?

A Bid is a standing order where the trader wishes to buy a contract at a specified price and quantity. An Ask is a standing order where the trader wishes to sell a contract at a specified price and quantity.

Does BitMEX have any market makers?

BitMEX engages with designated market makers who quote on contracts that BitMEX offers. No special privileges are given to any of the market makers.


Does BitMEX offer leverage?

Yes, BitMEX offers leverage on all of its products.

How much leverage does BitMEX offer?

The amount of leverage BitMEX offers varies from product to product. Leverage is determined by the Initial Margin and Maintenance Margin levels. These levels specify the minimum equity you must hold in your account to enter and maintain positions. Leverage is not a fixed multiplier but rather a minimum equity requirement. You can see the minimum Initial Margin and Maintenance Margin levels for all products here.

The highest leverage BitMEX offers is up to 100x leverage on its Perpetual Bitcoin / USD Perpetual Contract.

What is Initial Margin?

Initial Margin is the minimum amount of cryptocurrency you must have to open a position.

What is Maintenance Margin?

Maintenance Margin is the minimum amount of the relevant cryptocurrency you must hold to keep a position open. If your margin balance on BitMEX drops below this level your position will be taken over by the Liquidation Engine and be Liquidated.


Why did I get liquidated?

When the Mark Price of a contract falls below your liquidation price for longs, or rises above your liquidation price for shorts, your Maintenance Margin level has been breached and the Liquidation Engine takes over your position. In your Trade History, the price the liquidated position was closed at is the Bankruptcy Price (equivalent to where your Maintenance Margin is equal to 0).

How does the Liquidation Engine work?

Upon liquidation, the Liquidation Engine attempts to close the position at the prevailing market price. If it is unable to do so then Auto-Deleveraging will occur.

Can I go bankrupt?

No. We have a sophisticated margin and liquidation process that is designed to prevent any trader’s margin balance on BitMEX from ever going below 0.

Do you socialise losses?

No. BitMEX employs an Auto-Deleveraging System that does not need to socialise losses.

What is Auto-Deleveraging?

Auto-Deleveraging occurs when a liquidation remains unfilled in the market. Traders who hold opposing positions will be closed out according to leverage and profit priority.


Is there a fee to deposit Bitcoin?

No, BitMEX does not charge fees on Bitcoin deposits.

Is there a fee to deposit Ether, Tether and other ERC-20 coins?

No, BitMEX does not charge fees on Ether, Tether and other ERC-20 deposits.

Is there a fee to withdraw Bitcoin?

No, BitMEX does not charge fees on withdrawals of Bitcoin. When withdrawing Bitcoin, the minimum Bitcoin Network fee is set dynamically based on blockchain load and can be viewed on the Withdrawal Page.

Is there a fee to withdraw Ether, Tether and other ERC-20 coins?

Yes, BitMEX charges fees on withdrawals of Ether, Tether and ERC-20 coins. The withdrawal fees can be viewed on the Withdrawal Page.

Are there fees to trade?

Yes, BitMEX charges a trading fee on every completed trade. Please view the Fees page for more information.

Deposits and Security

How do I deposit funds?

Under the Account tab, click on the Deposit link where you will be provided addresses to deposit cryptocurrency. After required network confirmation(s), funds will be credited to your account.

What is the Minimum Deposit to trade on BitMEX?

The minimum amount to trade on BitMEX varies from product to product depending on the Initial Margin. For XBTUSD (for example) it is $1 USD * 1% (Initial Margin) = $0.01. At a XBT/USD price of $600 this equals 0.00001667 XBT.

Does BitMEX use a Hot Wallet?

BitMEX stores all Bitcoin in a Cold Multi-signature Wallet. BitMEX stores other assets in Hot and Cold Wallets. See our Security Page for more information.

What is a cold multi-signature wallet?

It is a Bitcoin wallet, stored offline that requires m of n signatures in order to spend any funds. In the case of BitMEX, it requires 2 of 3 partners to sign any transaction before funds may be spent.

Why does BitMEX use multi-signature addresses?

This is one of many theft prevention methods that BitMEX employs to ensure customer funds are kept secured.

When are withdrawals processed?

BitMEX processes most bitcoin withdrawals in real-time. This may involve a manual review of your attempt to ensure that withdrawals are legitimate.

For security reasons, larger Bitcoin withdrawal amounts are processed daily - the cutoff time for larger Bitcoin withdrawals is 13:00 UTC. Shortly after that, Bitcoin will be sent to the address you specified.

Withdrawals for assets other than bitcoin are processed in real-time which may also involve a manual review of your attempt to ensure that withdrawals are legitimate.

If I have a problem, who do I contact?

Please Contact Support and a member of staff will contact you shortly.