I just opened a Coinbase account and purchased one ETH. Then I looked up the ETH wallet address (right on Coinbase), went to etherscan and searched for this address....Account was found, but doesn't show any balance or associated transaction. Please, advice.

P.S. Coinbase shows a balance of 1ETH

2 Answers 2


I not a user of Coinbase, but from my common sense theory, they settle your balance only on at an outgoing transaction to reduce transactional expenses and to have an ability to exchange your ether balance to other currencies. If it's in your wallet and only you have a key to that wallet they can't spend your ether.

  • But the Etherscan also shows balance and the balance is 0.
    – Jake
    Commented May 26, 2017 at 19:19
  • 2
    My guess is that Coinbase holds a pool of ETH FBO (for the benefit of) its different users. Coinbase has assigned 1 ETH to you from that pool and recorded this in their own database. A transaction was not written on Ethereum blockchain. Only when you send to or receive from another address that is not held at Coinbase, a transaction would need to be written on the blockchain. This is just my speculation, though. Commented May 26, 2017 at 20:56

The address Coinbase gives you is only a deposit address, meaning you will most likely never see your actual Coinbase exchange balance on this address. Also you do not have the private keys for your deposit addresses, so you can't make a withdrawal from an exchange deposit address anyway.

When you send a transaction to your exchange deposit address from another account (on-chain), you will be able to track your transaction. Sometimes the balance will sit on your deposit address for a while (e.g. until a specific threshold is reached) and then be transferred to the exchange cold storage or hot wallet.

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