InteractiveBrokers Forex Balances

Discussion in 'Retail Brokers' started by cscott, Aug 10, 2006.

  1. cscott


    Whenever I use IDEALPRO to trade forex at Interactivebrokers, I will make a trade such as selling 50,000 units of USD/CHF. To close out my position, I then, of course, buy back 50,000 units of USD/CHF.

    After that, when I view my account window, I sometimes see something like -$32.50 CHF in the Portfolio section. Do I need to use IDEAL to buy back $32.50 CHF? If so, I'd have to pay commission to use IDEAL to buy back the $32.50. I'm wondering if it is even necessary to buy it back so that my non-based currency equals $0, because it appears that my home-based(USD) currency balance does not change even though I show something like -$32.50 CHF.

    If I have to go to IDEAL to close out the -$32.50, then wouldn't it be better to use IDEAL in the first place to trade forex?
  2. Xenia


    FX profit/loss is always in CHF for any USDCHF trades.
    FX profit/loss is always in CAD for any USDCAD trades.
    FX profit/loss is always in JPY for any USDJPY trades.

    Just keep those currencies in your IB multicurrency account.
  3. ddunbar

    ddunbar Guest

    No, unless you like the illiquidity and 10pip and greater spreads. IF you trade the CHF often, then maybe at the end of the month if you have a positive or negative balance you might want to go on ideal (Not ideal pro) to sure it up. Pennies (<.10) will sweep out to zero.
  4. I don't think you should settle that loss. It is because the settlement cost (commission + slippage) is higher than the interest incurred.
  5. Would that be possible to use USD as the settlement currency when trading FOREX?
  6. cscott


    This whole forex trading at IB is confusing because of the way it is or is not calculated and lack of onscreen TWS information to follow your trade. Perhaps, I'll just stick to Oanda for forex trading. IB really needs to make forex trading simpler. They could learn from Oanda's platform.
  7. Oanda's platform is a little too simple IMO. I think they could learn from MetaTrader though :D

    I say IB hook up with Metatrader 4 and I'll open an account with them when I hit 21.
  8. Yes, it is a bit hard to follow our trades.

    How good Oanda is?

    Will it do anything evil like other forex market makers do? (I've heard many bad stories about spot forex).

    Thanks for your sharing.
  9. good to know i'm not alone here. so far i've only use ib for futures and was hoping to use it for spot fx. demo it on paper trade account and i have no idea what the hack i was trading in.....i can't follow the trades proper and half the time i seem to have some open positions when i shouldn't have, lost plenty of money quickly but thank goodness it was fake cash....simple is good, i don't care for the frills, i just want to trade....
  10. cscott


    No, blue, you are not alone...

    I've lost plenty of money trading forex because of my inability to keep up with forex trades on IB. Unfortunately, it was real money.

    Now, I have no problem trading stocks or futures with IB's TWS platform, but the forex part on IB's TWS is just confusing as hell! I like Metatrader too, but Oanda's platform is also really good, and I've used both in addition to IB's TWS to trade forex. Sometimes you do not need a real complicated layout to make a good platform. Simplicity is the key.

    BTW, I've used Metatrader 3 and 4, and both versions are buggier than Oanda's platform.
    #10     Aug 11, 2006