Exchange Strains Drive Crypto Exchange Kraken to Trim Trading Pairs


Kraken is removing a number of trading pairs as part of a broader effort to shore up the stability of its cryptocurrency exchange platform.

Citing the need to “help mitigate the strain on our platform caused by recent exponential growth”, the exchange is removing 11 trading pairs, perhaps most notably the bitcoin-denominated market for the British pound. The goal is to free up capacity on its systems by cutting some of the less voluminous markets, according to a blog post published yesterday.

Other delistings include the pair for ETH/GBP and fiat currency markets for Eos, Stellar Lumens and Gnosis. Further, the exchange indicated that some of the trading pairs may return, noting that this could happen “once we have ample capacity to do so.”

In addition to the delistings, Kraken is moving to suspend some of the more advanced trading features on its site. Existing order types such as stop losses, take profit limits and trailing stops will be temporarily removed, though active orders will stay open until they are executed. For now, users will only be able to create basic limits and regular market orders until further notice.

Kraken said in a statement:

“We apologize for the inconvenience to clients but we think that immediate action is needed to help alleviate the current strain on our platform. We may take further action if these changes aren’t enough. Our overall plan is to reduce the load on our current platform until upgrades can be made that will enable us to smoothly scale capacity.”

Signs on social media suggest that users were largely surprised by the move, triggering concerns about existing deposits as well as broader questions about where to exchange cryptocurrencies for the pound.

Additional changes could be coming to the exchange as it seeks to improve the site’s functionality. Accessibility issues have dogged Kraken during moments of significant market activity, and further steps maybe taken “if these changes aren’t enough,” according to the blog post.

“Our overall plan is to reduce the load on our current platform until upgrades can be made that will enable us to smoothly scale capacity,” the startup wrote.

Disclosure: CoinDesk is a subsidiary of Digital Currency Group, which has an ownership stake in Kraken. 

Image via Shutterstock

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