Portfolio Margin at ThinkorSwim

Discussion in 'Options' started by opt789, Jun 14, 2007.

  1. Just curious, anyone else applying for Portfolio Margin at Think or Swim? The "test" you have to take is archaic but I guess they figure they have to check that you know something.

    So far they seem like they are going to be reasonable and pretty much stick to the exchange minimum margins, unlike IB which makes you cover more. What I really want to know is what happens to all the firms offering P.M. when a very large gap move eventually happens, we haven't had one in so long that people tend to forget about them. Will they overreact and curtail it significantly or not? I guess only time will tell.
  2. Wow, no one be me? Either you guys aren't using TOS, which seems a little surprising since they are one of the best retail firms for options, or you don't have 100k+. Interesting either way.

    If any of you are considering it let me know your questions, I may be able to answer them.
  3. Opra


    Personally I have not had the need for it yet, w/ my all options portfolio.
  4. I'm a TOS enthusiast and would appreciate more color, as you're able to provide. Are you up and running already with portfolio margin, or only in the application process? What instruments do you trade? Can you offer real-life examples of margin treatment at TOS? Thanks.
  5. The analyze tab in the TOS software is the best tool to see what your PM requirements will be if you don't have your own option analysis software. I am told that they will be up and running with PM very soon, hopefully in a week or so.

    A simple example is a naked sell. Under reg-t selling 10 SPX July 1400 Puts at $3 would require about $183k while under PM it would require about $30k. The best part is that you can do strategies that were not worth it under reg-t like reverse calendars, gamma scalping, net short ratio trades, etc.

    As in anything, extra leverage is a very dangerous thing that should be used with caution, but at least with PM you don't have completely pointless restrictions that exist under reg-t.
  6. does their PM tool let you change numbers? For instance, if you have positions on SPY, does it let you enter hypothetical values for SPY and volatility to see what your PM would be?
  7. I doubt there's more than 10 or 15 people on ET who qualify for PM, and they're probably all using IB. However I'm interested in TOS. IB's PM is hardly better than Reg-T so I may switch to TOS.
  8. Thanks, Opt. Will be curious to hear how it works out for you in live trading -- whether you get "as advertised" margin treatment.
  9. Yes, you can put in different hypotheticals for trades, vols, dates, etc. Then you set the % risk move where you want it and it gives you your risk graph. You can download the fully functioning software from their website and test it out.
  10. arl


    when is tos supposed to introduce their proprietary inter-market spread routing?
    #10     Jun 14, 2007