Understanding Liquidations on CVEX

May 27, 2024

Sometimes, a trader might not have enough funds to cover a potential loss. When this happens, a process called "liquidation" is used to close their positions, ensuring the market remains stable and fair for everyone. This is like a safety net that prevents big problems before they happen. 

It's important to know that while we talk about liquidation, it doesn't happen on our practice platform, the CVEX testnet. This means you can learn and try things out on the testnet without worrying about liquidation until we launch the real trading platform, the mainnet.

What is Liquidation?

Liquidation in cryptocurrency trading is when a trader’s position is closed by the trading platform because their account doesn't have enough funds to cover potential losses. Think of it as a forced exit from a trade when it looks like the trader might lose more money than they have available. This can happen when the value of cryptocurrencies changes rapidly and a trader’s losses are about to exceed what they originally invested.

Why does this happen? 

It’s all about keeping the market safe and fair. If a trader’s losses went unchecked, it could lead to bigger problems not just for them, but for everyone trading. By automatically closing these losing positions, the platform protects the trader from even greater losses and helps maintain a stable and reliable trading environment. This ensures that everyone on the platform can continue trading under fair conditions. Liquidation is a protective measure — a bit like how a circuit breaker works in your home, stopping the power when the system is overloaded to prevent any damage.

Step-by-Step Liquidation Process on CVEX

Understanding how liquidation unfolds on CVEX is key for traders. Here’s a clear, step-by-step guide on what happens from opening a position to possible liquidation.

1. Position Opening by Trader:

When traders decide to enter a trade on CVEX, they open a position using some of their funds as collateral, which is known as the margin. This margin is important because it acts as a security deposit, ensuring that the trader can cover any losses they might incur in the trade. It's like putting down a deposit when renting something, promising that you'll cover any damages.

2. Margin Ratio Exceeded:

A trader’s margin ratio exceeds 100% when their losses are about to surpass the margin they've put up. In simple terms, it means the trader's account no longer has enough funds to keep the trade open due to market movements against their position. This is a critical threshold because it triggers the platform’s protective mechanisms to start the liquidation process to prevent further losses that could destabilise the market.

3. Initiation by Clearance Bots:

Clearance Bots on CVEX play a critical role in monitoring trading positions. When a trader’s margin ratio exceeds 100%, these automated systems quickly detect the risk and initiate the liquidation process. Think of Clearance Bots as vigilant guardians that constantly watch over the market, ensuring that all positions remain secure and swiftly addressing any that become risky.

4. Liquidation Methods:

  • Market Order Liquidation: When liquidation is triggered, the system attempts to close the position using a market order, which sells the position at the best available market price. This method is designed to quickly mitigate risk by exiting the position, aiming to prevent further losses in a volatile market.

  • Use of Default Fund: If the proceeds from the market order are not sufficient to cover all outstanding liabilities, CVEX’s Default Fund comes into play. This fund is a safety net, accumulated from liquidation fees, used to cover the shortfall and ensure that all parties are protected against extreme market movements.

  • Counterparty Liquidation via Auto Deleverage Queue: As a last resort, if the Default Fund is unable to cover the liabilities, the platform engages the Auto Deleverage Queue. This process systematically reduces positions of other traders who hold opposite positions, ensuring market stability and fairness. It’s a necessary mechanism to prevent a cascade of defaults that could affect the broader market.

Each of these methods is integral to maintaining market integrity and protecting both individual traders and the overall trading environment from significant losses.

5. Distribution of Recovered Funds:

When liquidation occurs, the funds recovered are first used to pay off the outstanding debts of the liquidated trader. If the sale of the trader's positions generates more money than what was owed, the surplus is returned to the trader. This ensures that the trader only loses what is necessary to cover their debts, and if the market conditions are favorable, they may still retain some capital. This fair distribution method is crucial for maintaining trust and fairness in the trading system.

6. Fees and Rewards:

  • Liquidation Fee: A fee is charged on each liquidated position, which is typically about 2% of the position’s nominal value. This fee is crucial as it contributes to the Default Fund, which acts as a buffer to absorb losses and protect the market during periods of high volatility or significant liquidations.

  • Rewards for Clearance Bots: Clearance Bots are incentivised to perform efficiently and protect the market. A portion of the liquidation fee, usually around 0.5%, is allocated as a reward to the Clearance Bot that successfully initiated the liquidation. This reward system ensures that Bots are motivated to monitor positions proactively, contributing to a stable and secure trading environment.

Understanding these fees and rewards is essential for traders, as it highlights the importance of managing their risks and the mechanisms CVEX employs to uphold market integrity and compensate those who help maintain it.

No Liquidation on Testnet

Before we finish, it’s important to notice something one more time.

On the CVEX testnet, traders can explore and experiment with various trading strategies without the risk of liquidation. This environment provides a safe space for learning and understanding market dynamics without the financial stress of actual trading. It’s an excellent opportunity for both novice and experienced traders to refine their techniques, test the impact of different leverage levels, and understand the behavior of their trades under simulated market conditions. 

We encourage all our users to take full advantage of the testnet to develop and enhance their trading skills, preparing them for live trading scenarios where real capital is at stake.


So, understanding the liquidation process is essential for every trader engaged in cryptocurrency trading on platforms like CVEX. Liquidation acts as a critical control mechanism that protects the market and traders from excessive losses due to highly leveraged positions. For traders, comprehending when and how liquidations occur helps in crafting more informed and resilient trading strategies. It reinforces the need for effective risk management, prompting traders to maintain adequate margins and to continuously assess their position against market movements. This knowledge not only safeguards their investments but also enhances their ability to navigate volatile markets.