Can L2 Visa holder do some Stock Trading

Discussion in 'Retail Brokers' started by mohai, Mar 22, 2012.

  1. mohai



    My first post here, need help. I am on L2 Visa (spouse of L1 visa holder) here.
    I want to do some futures trading, as I have done some back in my home country, But I want to know what is required for that.

    I have applied for SSN will be getting it by next week or so.

    1) My question, is SSN enough to open a brokerage account with a broker here and do some futures trading ?

    2) Or, do I need to get EAD also ?
    If EAD is required that means I will have to wait for 2-3 months.

    3) Can I open a account with SSN and just watch the market till I get EAD, then I can start trading.

    Please reply fast :)

    Moderators : Sorry, If I have posted in wrong section please move this.

  2. just use your SSN.

    This is not India, even foreigners who do not reside in the US can open a US brokerage account and trade US stock markets.
  3. mohai


    Thanks Grandluxe,

    Since you understood my problem, so am adding few more questions, and yes I am from India.

    I want to trade futures only, so can a account be opened with less than 25k and used for trading (as you know we can not carry money out of India).

    Am I correct in understanding that Pattern Day Trading rules don't apply to futures, they apply only for stocks and options.

  4. Yes you can open and trade a futures account with less than 25K. PDT rules do not apply. However futures accounts that small may be too risky according to conventional wisdom.

    Actually since you not a permanent U.S. resident (even though physically present here) then PDT rules may not technically apply but I am not positive. Probably they will apply them anyway. They probably apply using the tax definition of resident (eg. days spent within the U.S. in a year) rather than the immigration definition. The two can differ.

    Be sure to answer brokerage question honestly and be clear that you are not a permanent resident (but may be a tax resident perhaps) and specifically mention L1 visa on all forms. For stocks, dividend and interest withholding may apply. India may not have a treaty with the U.S. to recover these.

    However capital gains should be ok always.

    Also if you are NRI then you may want to check out Interactive Brokers as they have an Indian subsidiary and also offer Indian stocks to NRI status individuals in the U.S. They may be able to help with residence related questions.

    These are just casual observations and may not be 100% accurate. Please reverify.

    There is another way to avoid PDT rules and trade stocks by joining a proprietary trading company which might be better than trying to trade futures undercapitalized, but has its own problems (some disreputable firms etc.) Also there might be residency issues there too.
  5. futures do not have PDT rule even for American citizens!
  6. Right I meant that he might theoretically be able to trade stocks also with a small account with no P.D.T. rules if he is not a U.S. resident.
  7. mohai


    Thanks Comintel,

    So now I understand I can open an account with SSN and trade futures. That's good, atleast I can start.

    Money is big deal as always, India does not allows more than $10k to be taken. Worse out of the 10 some are already spend here on basic setup. So don't have a option, except to start small, but a regular paycheck is there to add to it, so it will increase to respectable levels gradually.

    No not interested in any proprietary trading company, just want to do is my way.

  8. mohai


    Many thanks Grandluxe.
  9. mohai


    Yes difficult, but lets give it a try.
    Can I trade some mini/micro futures. What are my options ?

  10. mohai


    Yes, but with the limited money I have, What are my options some mini/micro futures may be ?
    Can you suggest something, till I put more money into it.

    #10     Mar 22, 2012