What are intial and maintenance margins?

Discussion in 'Index Futures' started by bourbon, May 17, 2005.

  1. bourbon


    What are intial and maintenance margins?

    please be gentle :)

    Does it mean you need to have both amounts as backup in your account at all times?
  2. m_c_a98


    Initial margin is the amount you need to put on the trade and maintenance margin is the minimum amount to hold it. If you go below maintenance then you may have to liquidate the position or deposit more funds.

    If you are just daytrading electronic futures then most firms don't use these margin requirements; they let you trade in and out with much less provided you don't hold past the close.

    -when trading futures you don't actually use your funds to buy and sell anything. you just post margin amounts.
  3. dojistarz

    dojistarz Guest

    just initial

    but if account ends up below maintenance
    you have to wire money to get it to initial margin level
    or just close your position.
  4. bourbon


    that's wonderfull !
  5. One other thing, for initial margin you can put your money in T-bills and get some interest. Most brokers count 95% of the T-bill value toward the initial margin. For the maintenance margin you need to have that in the account as cash.
  6. bourbon


    cool...but what's a T-bill :D
  7. Don't you mean cash for the maintenance margin minus the initial margin?