Looking for broker

Mar 28, 2003
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London
#1
Hi,

What would be the best broker to use for swing & position trading?

Following are a couple of points to consider:

1) Must provide margin at reasonable financing rates.

2) Cover the main exchanges.

3) Cover all companies in a exchange. (This rules out CFD providers as they only allow you to trade the larger companies)

I understand IB are very cheap and cover a wide range of exchanges but they appear to be aimed at Daytraders. Can I position trade with them on margin?

Kind regards.
 
Nov 17, 2000
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#2
IB is a full brokerage, used by daytraders, swing traders, end-of-day traders, weekly traders, and institutions.

Yes, it's used by daytraders, but that is just because it has very reasonable commissions, covers a large number of markets, and is readily accessible to Brits (unlike some US brokerages).

Yes you can trade with them on margin. Have a look at their website interactivebrokers.co.uk and you can read all about their margin requirements, markets traded, commissions, etc. Almost everything you'd want to know is on that website somewhere, and all their wares are laid out for you to see before you consider opening an account with them. I can't think of any other brokerage which does this.
 

CityTrader

Active member
Mar 29, 2003
665
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www.aarcaspartners.co.uk
#3
Marc100,
not sure if any non CFD broker will provide finance?

If you do go down the full service broker route, I'd be more than happy to reccomend a couple of firms, PM if you are interested- but remember you get what you pay for, and a decent broker will more than cover his costs in his execution skills, rather than a telephone jockey who will always fill you at the touch...
 
Mar 28, 2003
67
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London
#4
Thank you for your responses.

Skimbleshanks

Looking at the IB site it states 50% margin available so I think I will go down this route. Thanks.

CityTrader

When I mentioned finance I was refering to the interest charged on the amount borrowed when using margin, as in that offered by IB above. Sorry for the confusion.

Thanks again for your replys.

Marc.
 
Mar 28, 2004
48
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Devon, UK
#6
Gary(IB)/shimbleshanks

Is there a minimum funding balance required to open an account?

I have checked the site but can't find these details.

Also, I am a newcomer to trading and it seems IB require a Trader to have executed 100 trades before opening an account. I don't have 100 trades under my belt as I have been paper trading and would now like to start trading proper. I don't see on giving away my hard earned savings to SB companies. I want to Day Trade and Swing Trade - where can I open an account as a Beginner?

Thanks

LWB
 
Nov 17, 2000
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#7
LWB:

To trade in the US you have to have a minimum account balance of $2,000 (legal requirement set by US Government, not IB) or the equivalent in your base currency.

The initial deposit details are here:
http://www.interactivebrokers.com/html/generalAccount/minimumDeposits.html

But do remember that this minimum is sufficient to keep the account open, and you'll need an extra cushion of funds in your account to cover your trading losses, and commissions etc.

And as to the minimum trading levels required, all brokers and SB companies are the same in requiring experience. I assume that everyone just tells a few porkies on their application form - after all, no-one's going to check up, and the reason all brokers ask for this is so that they cannot be blamed if you open an account and then blow it on day one because you didn't know anything about trading.
 
Dec 23, 2003
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B
#8
Skim,

you seem to have to know about the workings of IB. I just seem to get confused when navigating their web site.

Could you (or anyone else) please help with a few questions:

1 I read on IB that you need $25K to trade US stocks? Is this correct?

2 Also is it better to open an account in dollars or pounds (or euros!!)

3 Lastly can you trade on margin if you open a cash account?

Thanks

Neph
 
Jan 14, 2003
8,421
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UK
#10
A Pattern Day Trader is a person who will open and close trades in US stocks in the same day.

To be allowed to do this you have to have a minimum of $25K in your account. If you dont then you are not allowed to open and close more than 3 trades during any 5 days that you intend to close on the same day.

If you open an IB account it is best to keep your funds in your own country's base currency (in my view) so GBP if you live in the UK.



Paul
 
Mar 28, 2004
48
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Devon, UK
#12
Thanks for this very useful info

better go and make $25k then!! - as spreadbetting seems the only way forward at the moment and based on the spreads I've seen so far I should be there is about 25 years!

Although if I had left my $10 stake on Nasdaq Index for longer than 15 minutes this morning I would have made my first $300 - but hey one shouldn't look back - I made $20!!! - all Demo of course.
 
Nov 17, 2000
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#13
LWB:

You mentioned that you are trading the Nasdaq. If you're trading the indices as emini futures then you don't need $25k in your account. Pattern Day Trader (PDT) status applies only to US stocks - futures have no restrictions on the number of times you can buy/sell in a day and the only thing you need is sufficient in your account to trade the number of contracts. That's why they're so popular.

So, for example, I would suggest that if you are trading emini Nasdaq (NQ) that you have a minimum of $5k in your account for every one contract traded - that way you have a nice safe cushion to make loads of small mistakes.
 
Mar 28, 2004
48
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16
Devon, UK
#14
Thanks for that Shimbleshanks

That gives me more hope.

Well it was by default that I ended up trading the Nasdaq Index as I hadn't found my way round the Capital Spreads Demo Platform properly and didn't think the demo let you trade anything but indices, so it was just a way of getting used to Spreadbetting really.

Long term I would like to Day/Swing Trade in US Stocks but for today I've had fun with the Capital Spreads Demo and Nasdaq Index.

What I am learning is that the fastest way to learn is to cock it up!

Won't open an IB account until I stop doing that.

LWB
 
Mar 28, 2004
48
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16
Devon, UK
#15
Excuse me, since when was cock a rude word - I've seen worse on this forum, it must be my Mum moderating this thread!

I feel ashamed that I've already had a word 'bleeped' and I'm only just starting out - haven't lost any money yet. :eek:
 
Dec 12, 2003
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#16
There seems to be a lot of fans of ib here.
Agreed the costs are 2nd to none but the actual trading seems a bit un-user friendly. Tried the demo and it seems fairly hard work. Is there any way to set up 1-click trading?(like Refco - may be others)
 
#17
Binsley,

One click trading is available either through Book-Trader which is a DOM depth of market window or by creating a hot - key on the standard TWS screen. In fact you can send an entry order along with pre-determined stop and profit-taking orders simultaneously with one click.

If you would like more information please feel free to contact me.
 
May 11, 2004
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maryland
#18
LittleWhiteBull said:
Excuse me, since when was **** a rude word - I've seen worse on this forum, it must be my Mum moderating this thread!

I feel ashamed that I've already had a word 'bleeped' and I'm only just starting out - haven't lost any money yet. :eek:

I'm a daytrader and do some swingtrading. I use AIM Day Trader. They will allow daytrading with less than 25k. In fact they only requre $500.

I would like to correct something that someone wrote on this board. $2000 is not a minimum for opening an account set forth by the sec. It is, however, the minimum to mainain a margin account.

Good day
 
May 6, 2004
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London
#19
I am also looking for a broker for trading in currency options mainly £/$, and UK/US/Japan index options. Can anyone suggest any suitbale ones please?
I have been to the IB site and cannot be certain that they deal in currency options as opposed to futures.
Many thanks and apologies for jumping on someone else's thread.
 
#20
binsley said:
There seems to be a lot of fans of ib here.
Agreed the costs are 2nd to none but the actual trading seems a bit un-user friendly. Tried the demo and it seems fairly hard work. Is there any way to set up 1-click trading?(like Refco - may be others)
Also try www.twowayfutures.com . IB resellers for the UK. Slightly more cost wise per side, but comes with a bundled NinjaTrader as a front end - great piece of kit IMHO.