📊 Basic Trading FAQ

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What do I need to start trading?

  1. Computer with Firefox, Chrome or other browser that supports the Metamask wallet

  2. A Metamask account.

  3. USDC -- all trades are funded and settled in USDC. You can obtain USDC at any major exchange, such as Uniswap.

  4. [Optional] Insurance from Nexus Mutual.

  5. Courage -- trade at your own risk! Financial loss is possible, although you will never lose more than your initial investment.

Why do I need to deposit & withdraw?

These steps allow you to trade on Perpetual Protocol with zero or near-zero gas fees, thanks to the xDai network, while also using your regular Ethereum wallet to trade, with no set-up needed.

Deposit Step
Withdraw Step
Deposit Step

The deposit step moves your USDC from Ethereum to the xDai network.

The funds remain in your wallet and are visible if you add the xDai RPC (two click method) as well as the xDai USDC custom token.

If you prefer, you can perform this deposit step manually using Omni Bridge.

Approval Step 1: Approve your USDC for transfer to xDai Deposit: Execute the transfer to xDai Approval Step 2: Approve your USDC for trading on Perpetual Protocol

Withdraw Step

The withdraw step moves your USDC from xDai back to Ethereum.

If you prefer, you can perform this deposit step manually using Omni Bridge.

Approval Step 1: Approve your USDC for transfer Approval Step 2: Approve the transfer to Ethereum (the transaction will be executed by bridge validators)

Why are gas fees low or even zero while trading?

All trades are processed using the xDai Chain, an Ethereum side chain. xDai is a faster blockchain with 5 second block times and incredibly low gas fees.

  • If you trade from Ethereum with no hardware wallet, gas fees are paid for you.

  • If you trade from xDai (e.g. when using a hardware wallet), typical fees are around 0.001 USD per trade. 1 Gwei gas price will get your trade confirmed in under 5 seconds in almost all cases.

How to reduce/increase position size

This is not possible yet due to the nature of the AMM model. It is not possible to guarantee the final size of your position after the request is made. E.g. if you have a 1000 USD position and give an order to reduce it to 500 USD, other trades in the same block could cause your final position to be above or below your 500 USD target.

To change your position size, either open a new buy or sell order. The new position will be merged with the active (existing) position.

If you have insufficient collateral, you can remove margin from your active position(s) using Margin Mgt. (thereby increasing your leverage).

Why use USDC? Can we deposit other assets?

USDC was chosen as the base asset thanks to its popularity throughout the DeFi space.

It is possible to let users trade using other assets, such as BTC or ETH, as collateral, but we do not plan to add this feature in the short term. It may be added via governance in the future.

What is the funding time?

A keeper (bot) triggers funding at the beginning of each hour.

Currently the funding period is not shown on the interface; we are working on a way to add this information.

Deep dive The Perpetual Protocol smart contract will allow anyone to trigger funding after the top of the hour. Once funding has been triggered, it cannot be triggered again until the next hour. In addition, funding cannot be triggered until 30 minutes have elapsed since the previous trigger. E.g. if funding is not triggered at 3:00, and then triggered at 3:35, the next funding will not be allowed to trigger before 4:05.

How are funding payments displayed in Position History?

Funding payments are shown as positive numbers when you made a funding payment (debit), and negative numbers when you received a payment (credit).

See your position history including funding payments in Position History at the top of the trading interface:

How are funding payments credited/debited to your account?

Funding payments will increase or decrease the margin of the respective position each time the funding cycle ends.

What are the fees charged by Perpetual Protocol when trading?

0.1% Transaction Fees

Transaction fees are deposited into the Insurance Fund to cover unexpected losses to the exchange resulting during trading on Perpetual Protocol.

A portion of transaction fees will be shared with stakers. See Staking for the latest information about transaction fee sharing.

Fees and fee allocation can be adjusted through governance to keep the protocol competitive in the market.

How could I propose a new underlying asset to be traded on Perpetual Protocol?

The community votes on what assets should be added. Start by joining the conversation in the #👑governance channel on our Discord. Next, you can read, comment on or create a new proposal at our governance forum:

What are the caps and why do we need them?

Currently Perpetual Protocol has 2 types of caps:

Type

Explanation

Personal Position Cap

This is the maximum position size you can open for any individual asset traded on Perpetual Protocol. This includes long and short positions.

For example, the maximum position size for ETH might be 200 ETH (this is just an example - the real number will be bigger.)

Open Interest Cap

Open Interest refers to the value of all open positions, long or short, in aggregate. This total value has an upper maximum limit.

For example, if all the BTC long positions are worth 5 million USDC in total, and all short positions are worth 2 million USDC in total, the open interest is 7 million USDC.

How to check current personal cap size

Go to perp.exchange and enter a large number for the asset you wish to check. The interface will give you a warning, as well as show the current maximum size you can trade.

Note there is no easy way to check the open interest cap at this time. The team monitors open interest and increases the cap as needed, according to market conditions.

Why are there caps?

Caps help keep traders on Perpetual Protocol safe. A sudden, dramatic increase in open interest may be the result of an exploit or attack. Personal caps increase the friction for those attempting an exploit, forcing them to manage an attack across several wallets, while at the same time being of relatively little hindrance to regular traders.

Having caps helps limit the effect and scale of attacks, reducing the profit for attackers. Caps also help mitigate the possibility of price manipulation exploits.