Bitfinex reopened user signups on January 12, 2018 and added a minimum equity requirement for new accounts.
During the heights of crypto trading boom in 2017, several exchanges temporarily closed down new sign ups because they could not handle the inflow of new customers. Bitfinex was one of them, as the second big exchange to do so after Bittrex closed down registration on December 15th, 2017. Several exchanges followed soon, all signup halts were temporary.
This article originally informed readers about Bitfinex closing down their referral program, which Bitfinex representatives did not announce - they simply stopped paying out the revenue share.
Bitfinex since then reopened their platform to new registrations on January 12, 2018. However, new users need to deposit a minimum equity of 10K USD in cryptocurrencies in order to activate the trading functionality.
While Bitfinex did not renew their referral program, they have a new referral program active for EthFinex.
EthFinex is an Ethereum-based sister platform of Bitfinex that recently announced the launch of their trustless (non-custodial) service on top of the current centrally maintained ETH-based trading platform.
Archived Bitfinex announcement regarding the minimum equity requirement
[…] to allow us to maintain focus on our core customer base, all accounts created after January 1st, 2018, will have a new activation equity requirement.
New accounts will need to deposit fiat or crypto to achieve minimum account equity of 10,000 USD equivalent before they can trade or offer funding. After reaching this minimum, an account becomes fully activated (Note that after this initial activation, account equity is allowed to drop below this activation threshold without consequence).
Existing accounts will not be affected by these changes. This change only affects new accounts.
Archived discussion of Bitfinex affiliates noticing they are not getting paid
There has been a discussion on /r/bitfinex about new people not being able to get their referral link to become Bitfinex representatives.
For the people who have been already active representatives, new signups stopped being granted last week.
In this case the support is responsive, and here is what they have to say:
The Bitfinex referral program has been discontinued. This means that affiliates will no longer be able to sign up new users and receive commission on the fees charged.
We are currently working on a new program whereby existing users will be able to invite a limited group of new users to sign-up or the Bitfinex platform. Once this has been finalized then we will notify existing users who qualify with details regarding this program. At this time , and until such a time as the new program is operational we will not be accepting new users to the platform.