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Earning More of a Coin: Interests and Lending

Image: Automatic bitcoin lending with Poloniex bot.


Feeling tilted? Seriously, because trading altcoins can sometimes feel more like gamble.

Putting all eggs in one basket can have very bad consequences but so can panic selling at every movement. Altcoins are volatile right now, if you are in an non-leveraged position you sometimes need to keep calm, hold on and wait for the price to get where you need it. For a day trader who is after fast profits this can be hard.

If you don’t feel like playing the coin game right now but you still want your money to earn something, keep reading.

Poloniex lending

That’s right, a nice way to earn daily interest rate on coins that you are not planning to risk at the moment. The lowest possible loan period is 2 days so don’t worry that your coins will sit somewhere for 2 months. They might but it’s not necessary.

Now, the title says Poloniex. Bitfinex has the same system of margin funding as Poloniex - your money is provided by other users who placed a loan offer for a daily interest rate that was lower than the maximum IR you specified.

The difference for you as a lender is that Poloniex is altcoin exchange and people borrow tons of bitcoin. Bitfinex is a bitcoin exchange where people mostly want to borrow dollars. That’s why interest rate on Bitfinex can be as much as 50x lower than on Poloniex. You read that right.

Sure thing more people are earning on Poloniex now which means you will need some unfair advantage, like a lending bot.

Lending bot for Poloniex

Well the very first thing is you want to set up an account on Poloniex.com. Even if you have one already, it might be better to set up a new one for lending only. After all, with the lending bot you are having your API key and secret in a text file in plain text on your normal day-to-day computer.

As a second thing you need to transfer some bitcoin to Poloniex and as it comes, transfer it from exchange wallet to lending wallet. The lending bot will get your available lending balance and split it into smaller chunks that will be offered at a few different rates.

Installing the bot is really easy if you are on Linux. Just clone this Github repo and run the pythin script. If you are on Windows, RTFM. It is a command line script and it doesn’t need a lot of resources, you can run it even from a pretty weak laptop.

On the first run the lending bot will ask you to edit a config file. Copypaste your API key and secret from Settings > API keys on Poloniex. Further down in the file change the minimum acceptable daily interest rate, the default value is too low.

Once you start the bot it keeps waiting and calling the exchange every 60 seconds. If there is some money returned to your lending wallet it will attempt to lend them. It makes a lot of offers that are too high to be immediately filled you have to wait a few minutes.

You have much better chance to hit the spikes with the bot than by manually reloading the order book in web backend.

You can kill the bot once your money is borrowed. It only places the orders, you don’t have to keep it running at all times. Although it is better to keep the bot running because it will attempt to lend any money that returns into your lending wallet.

How much you earn on bitcoin lending?

It is quite a passive income but don’t expect too much unless you have a lot of coin to lend.

Nowadays quite a normal interest rate is around 0.3% daily. You will pick up some spikes but you cannot count on them. Also, you will probably switch off the bot some times and your money will not be provided at all times.

Daily interest on bitcoin loans of 0.3% will in ideal case give you about 9% monthly, which minus 15% Poloniex fee is some 7.65%.

If you (realistically) earn 5% netto per month, you still only earn 0.5 BTC on each 10 BTC you lend.

You can lend out LTC and other coins too on Poloniex but expect much lower interest rates.

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