The chances are that if you’ve added crypto to your portfolio, it’s either held on an exchange or squirreled away in a cold storage solution, such as a hardware wallet.
Either way, it’s not earning you any interest.
This means you’re potentially missing out on bank-busting returns that will boost your investment without you having to lift a finger and create a passive income.
But there are a growing number of accounts specifically designed to pay interest on your crypto.
One such offering is from Nexo. We’ve tried it ourselves to see how it stacks up against the competition and can now bring you the results.
An inflation-busting rate of interest
The company, which boasts more than 1.5million customers at the time of writing, offers up to 12% interest on your deposits, and instant access loans.
Setting up an account is simple. It involves entering some personal information, sending over a photograph of your ID, such as a driving licence and setting up 2FA to secure your account.
Both the desktop site and the app are extremely intuitive. The design is minimal meaning everything’s right in front of you and clearly signposted.
Once your account is approved – which for me happened within minutes – you can make you first deposit.
The decisions you make now will determine how much interest you earn.
Let’s say you transfer £100 to test the water. You now have three choices.
- Invest that £100 as GBP and receive interest in the same currency.
- Have your interest paid in Nexo tokens.
- Convert your £100 into crypto and choose interest either in that crypto or Nexo tokens.
Options 2 and 3 both come with bonus interest rates. This can be boosted further using Nexo’s loyalty scheme, which is based on how many of the native tokens you hold.
Confused? Don’t be! These are the loyalty levels and interest rates achievable:
Buying Nexo tokens add bonus interest
To get the highest rate of interest you’ll first need to maintain the Platinum level which means 10% of your savings must be in Nexo tokens.
Then, you’ll either need to transfer GBP to your Nexo wallet and use it to buy Tether (USDT) and have your interest paid in Nexo tokens. This way you’ll get the top tier 12%.
The account makes swapping between fiat and crypto straightforward with its built-in exchange. Transactions are processed instantly so you’ll know exactly what level of interest you’re receiving at any given time.
Your loyalty level also determines how many free withdrawals you’re allowed each month.
As your fiat or crypto deposits increase you’ll need to buy more Nexo tokens to maintain your loyalty level.
This means that if the value of Nexo tokens falls then so does your earnings. Conversely, you could potentially increase your returns if the token rises in value.
Is Nexo safe and is my money protected?
Nexo was launched in 2018 with the mission “to bring professional banking services to the world of digital assets”.
It currently has more than US $15billion of assets under management and is regulated in around 200 countries around the globe.
It is licensed, and insured up to US $150million against theft provided by BitGo.
However, none of your Nexo savings are covered by the UK’s Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS).
Additionally, there’s always the risk that any cryptocurrency held there will fall in value.
Although this would impact its value wherever it’s held, the effect would be compounded if you’ve chosen to have your interest paid in Nexo tokens or like-for-like crypto.
Any investment in the world of crypto should be approached with caution, especially as there are many bad actors out there.
But as far as we can tell, Nexo is a completely legitimate financial institution offering a high-quality service.
Secure an instant loan
Nexo primarily makes its money from loans. As soon as you deposit fiat or crypto you’ll see a credit line amount appear which increases the more you deposit.
Loans are available instantly without a credit check or the need to sell any of your portfolio.
Like any type of investing, you should never keep all your eggs in one basket.
Nexo, however, is clearly a serious player and the returns are tempting at this time of record low interest rates.
Anyone wishing to make their money work harder should take a close look at this new generation of savings accounts.
Adam is the founder of The Crypto Adviser which offers experts guides and reviews on all things related to Bitcoin and cryptocurrency.
Adam is Diploma for Financial Advisers (DipFA) Level 4 qualified, a Member of the London Institute of Banking and Finance (MLIBF), and has worked for many years as a journalist and PR consultant, having studied with the National Council for the Training of Journalists (NCTJ).