1. NO 2. Depends on the clearing Firm, I use SLK and it can vary based on what ur trading, etc. However, Margin requirments are a bit tricky with SLK, but they are with industry standard. (talk to the clearing firm of ur choice and they will elaberate on this) 3. 1:10 is a possiblity depending on a few factors (which the clearing firm will explain) 1:50 not in options or stock, I believe bonds have a nice ratio and not sure about futures. This also depends on if ur overnighting as well, however, if you have a close relationship with ur clearing firm, the overnight leverage can be messaged. 4. not sure about futures as i dont trade them The rest of ur question are best answered by the clearing firm you choose. From my experience, relationship with the clearing firm is the key factor. As you prove ur self as a succesful trader, the more the clearing firm will work with you , with in the paramaters of the SEC, NASD, and Clearing firm rules. If you team up with someone that has a established a solid, on going relationship with a clearing firm, this tends to give you a little more leeway. I just started my LLC, but teamed up with a friend that had a long lasting and standing relationship with SLK. This proved to help with our leverage and commish prices. Nasd and SEC fees are standard. The key thing with clearing firm is the leverage they give both intraday and overnight and the Margin call proticals. Sometimes they will give you an extended period for margin calls, allowing you to message ur postions so they fall back under the % that the calculate for a call. But each clearing firm is diffrent and its all based on relationship building outside the standard fees.