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I'm trying to get an idea of exchange ranking in terms of trading activity (i.e. volume). I've had a look at www.coinmarketcap.com. There are 3 sortings which are rather different:

  1. Exchanges by adjusted volume
  2. Exchanges by reported volume
  3. Exchanges by liquidity

How are adjusted volume and reported volume different? Why are the rankings on both so different? I also had a look at https://nomics.com/exchanges which gives yet another ranking different from the ones above.

  • I believe adjusted volume removes spot trading volume that is created on pairs with no trading fees (to prevent inflating trading volume using wash trading etc.). Other than that, I wouldn't know. CMC seems to be completely reliant on exchanges telling them their volumes, which, for unregulated exchanges, could be easily faked. I'm not sure how they adjust for that, even when excluding certain pairs etc. So, for unregulated exchanges (perhaps binance and a couple others excluded), i'd take the reported volume with a grain of salt. – Philips Kuyper Apr 23 at 16:07
  • @RutgerVersteegden: Your comment sounds like a great start for an answer, you should post it as such! :) – Murch Apr 23 at 16:12
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According to some research, reported volume is inflated by up to 95%. The figures in adjusted volume usually either remove exchanges whose reports are unreliable or attempt to determine the actual volume in some fashion. One source of highly increased volumes is that some exchange take fees for deposits and withdrawals but no fees on trades. Many sites remove trades without fees in their adjusted volume metric.

Liquidity pertains to the volume of the order books of an exchange.

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