Requirements to get a margin account at IB?

Discussion in 'Retail Brokers' started by JCVR, Sep 3, 2008.

  1. JCVR


    I opened a cash account at IB about a month ago and just requested an upgrade to margin and was denied. They read me a form letter saying that I could apply again if my employment situtation and account balance changed in the future. (I'm self employed and trading for a living and this particular account is small, only around 20k at the moment.)

    I asked them what the requirements were for a margin account but none of the customer service people could or would give me any color on it. I tried to explain that I currently have other margin accounts elsewhere and want to move my entire portfolio to IB but obviously not if they couldn't give me margin, but that still didn't work.

    Has anyone else had this same problem or know what the requirements are? Please post here or send me a PM if you do, this is beyond frustrating.
  2. The answer you should have given them is pretty obvious ...
  3. Hey JVR
    I have had the same problem with IB
    I opened a new account and they did not approve me for a margin account even thu i transfered my 20K from other broker
    I am a small guy and i also day trade and do a little work here and there to pay my bill till i can make constant money on Day trading.
    That mean i have to have $4500 for 1 es Contract 1 YM $3750 and ER $5750 and NQ $2750
    I mean it is ok with me as i dont want to over leverage my self but sometime when you see a good oppunity a day and you need to use a little bit then you have will be a problem.
    The main reason to opne with IB was good commision and you can trade futures and stock all from 1 account and even Forex
    But this is really sucks :(
  4. JCVR


    And what answer would that be?

    I want to stick with IB, I actually have another account that I manage there with a much larger amount of money in it which I use margin on, but I want to keep this new account totally seperate. If I need to have 30 or 40 or 50k in it to get margin that is fine, but I wish they would tell me...I'm not about to sit here sending wires in and reapplying every other day until i get to the magic level.

    My net worth, income, etc are all substantial so im really not sure wtf they want from me....again if anyone can give me some color...perhaps an IB rep...I would appreciate it.
  5. what is your credit rating? if it is bad, did IB check it. i have no clue why you got denied but poor credit rating could be a reason, especially these days.
  6. You just gave us and by inference, them, WAY to much information.

    It's none of their business what your financials are, they aren't your big brother.

    It's obviously worth it to you to continue trading through a brokerage which by your admittance is extremely frustrating in how they deal with their clientle ... but if it were me, I'd take my business elsewhere.

  7. Disagree. With a margin account a client COULD become indebted to the firm. That of course opens the tangential topic of IB being inconsistent with it's risk management.

    That said, I totally agree it is not their function to be big brother. If they have different funding requirements or require a certain FICO score to activate certain account features, that should be fully disclosed. BEFORE the account is funded. period.
  8. jcvr,

    when you say margin, are you referring to reg-t or portfolio margin. For PM you need 100k, for reg-t i believe anyone can get it with the initial deposit of 20k. It might be some of the answers you gave on the form regarding your past trading experience isnt "sufficient".
  9. Bullshit.

    The OP has 20k to fund his account.

    The fact that he is self-employeed is meaningless, especially with the fallout that has taken place on wall street ... LOL. Anyone can be self-employeed at in anytime in this economy. :eek:

    If IB won't let him leverage that amount, there are a ton of brokerages that will.

    If he'd rather whine to ET rather than take his money someplace else, hey, that's his choice.

    But the fact of the matter is they aren't looking out for his best interest with their rules, they're looking out for theirs.


    Full Disclosure: I would never deal with a brokerage that treated me like this, and since I don't trade stocks and only trade futs, I will never have a problem getting leverage on a 20k account (LOL). So this is just idle conversation while I wind down from a late nite.

    And on that note, OP, get some balls.

  10. JCVR


    Well after a third call to them this morning I couldn't get anymore information so I guess I'm going to move my account because I'm losing patience with these guys. For whoever said I gave too much info I guess you haven't opened an account at IB- they require all of this info, even for a cash account. It isn't my experience either, I have plenty of experience trading for myself and others.

    Does anyone have suggestions for a broker with low commissions that has better customer service and doesn't have a margin nazi in compliance?
    #10     Sep 4, 2008