Interactive Brokers

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Interactive Brokers LLC (IB) is an American multinational brokerage firm. It operates the largest electronic trading platform in the U.S. by number of daily average revenue trades. The company brokers stocks, options, futures, EFPs, futures options, forex, bonds, and funds. The company is headquartered in Greenwich, Connecticut and has offices in four cities. It is the largest subsidiary of the brokerage group Interactive Brokers Group, Inc., which was founded by Chairman Thomas Peterffy, an early innovator in computer-assisted trading. IB is regulated by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority, the New York Stock Exchange, the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, National Futures Association, Chicago Mercantile Exchange and other self-regulatory organizations. The company is a provider of fully disclosed, omnibus, and non-disclosed broker accounts and provides correspondent clearing services to 200 introducing brokers worldwide. The company serves 607,000 client brokerage accounts, with US$128.4 billion in customer equity. Interactive Brokers Group owns 40 percent of the futures exchange OneChicago, and is an equity partner and founder of the Boston Options Exchange.

Overall Score


We have collected all the parameters of brokers that are important for trading into different groups for your convenience. The closer the parameter is to the maximum value, the higher the percentage of the group. The overall score is based on all groups’ scores. Now you can see what the strengths of the broker are and where are their weaknesses. Not only to see but also to understand how much it suits your particular needs. If a broker has a GREEN VERIFIED, then the information about its parameters has been received from the broker and been examined by us! GREY NOT-VERIFIED means that information about the parameters of the broker is collected from open sources on the network, BUT it is not confirmed by our tests. RED NOT-VERIFIED means that there is no unambiguous information on this broker in open sources and the specified parameters may differ greatly from the actual ones.

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Interactive Brokers

When investing your money with a broker, you need the assurance that your broker is secure, with the capacity to tide over times good and bad. IBKR’s extraordinary capital position, conservative balance sheet and automated risk controls are planned to protect the brokerage and our clients from significant trading losses.

  • IBKR Nasdaq Listed
  • $9B Equity Capital
  • 78.2% Privately Held
  • $6.5B Excess Regulatory Capital
  • 1.33M Client Accounts
  • 3.31M Daily Avg Revenue Trades

Pros and Cons:


  • Large investment selection.
  • Market-leading research and tools.
  • 4,300+ no-transaction-fee mutual funds.
  • Wickedly smart order router
  • International range of offerings, across asset classes
  • Mutual Fund Replicator locates affordable ETFs

Is Interactive Brokers (IBKR) a Scam? : Regulations      

Interactive Brokers is the most prominent electronic brokerage firm in the US by the number of daily average revenue trades. Statistically, it is the leading Forex broker. Interactive Brokers also services commodity trading advisors, causing it to be the fifth-largest prime broker servicing that group. IB is regulated by the Securities and Exchange Commission, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority, the New York Stock Exchange, the Financial Conduct Authority .there are ties to other regulators and self-regulatory organisations besides.IBKR gives correspondent clearing services to 200 introducing brokers worldwide. The company serves 720 000 client brokerage accounts while accounting for $170.1 billion in customer equity. Interactive Brokers Group possesses $75 million intangible assets, including $24 million in computer equipment. 

Since Interactive Brokers has a global clientele, it’s been concentrating on security for a long time and meets or surpasses industry standards. IBKR security infrastructure includes:

  • Mobile app users being able to log in with biometric (face or fingerprint) recognition. 
  • Diverse forms of two-factor authentication.
  • IBKR Mobile Key, a native mobile app for two-factor authentication supporting fingerprint and PIN verification.
  • IBKR carries Lloyd’s of London’s excess SIPC insurance. $150 million covers each account. Lloyd’s policy provides up to an additional $30 million (including $900,000 for cash) For clients who have received the full SIPC protection, subject to an aggregate limit of $150 million. 
  • Interactive Brokers’ Bank Deposit sweep program facilitates clients supplementing their existing $250,000 SIPC coverage with $2,500,000 of FDIC Insurance on eligible cash balances.

 Interactive Brokers (IBKR) Trading Account Types

Client traders may open both personal and professional accounts at Interactive Brokers. Most clients will find the best fit with an individual, joint, IRA, trust, or UGMA/UTMA account for minors.

You may avail of Investment advisor, hedge fund, family office, money manager, and business accounts. A one-of-its-kind account type is the “friends and family advisor” account. The latter permits you to manage multiple linked accounts from one central login.

A balance of at least $100,000 invites no monthly fee. Instead, you have to put up with a paltry $10 in monthly trade commissions. No monthly fee is charged if you pay $10 or more in commissions.

Interactive Brokers(IBKR) Account Opening           

Some brokers make you bust your gut to open a new account. At Interactive Brokers, opening a new account is actually painless. All information is electronically verified. In all likelihood, you won’t be required to submit any paper or physical documentation.

The application process needs the submission of your contact information, employment information, Social Security number and bank information for funding your account. 

Applying for individual client accounts is kicking up your heels! Conversely, Institutional accounts are a tad bit complex.

Interactive Brokers(IBKR) Trading Platform

For close to 44 years, Interactive Brokers has pioneered the electronic trading revolution. The brokerage rose from a small US options market-maker into a considerable global trading firm. Leveraging the energies of automation and programming made the phenomenal meteoric rise possible.

The broker opened its far-flung intercontinental electronic network and trade execution services to clients, thus democratising access to cutting edge trading for countless traders.

Within the kissing distance of half a million clients, IBKR arguably facilitates more trades than any other online broker.

Everything about Interactive Brokers gravitates towards Traders Workstation (TWS). TWS is a heavy-duty and astronomically customisable downloadable platform. For some time now, it’s been gaining some creature comforts, such as a list titled “For You” sheltering links to your most frequently-used tools. With a spreadsheet-like appearance, TWS still needs some getting used to. The in-built Mosaic interface is eye candy, helping you arrange the tools to form a workspace. The Layout Library permits you to select from predefined interfaces. There’s always scope for evermore customisation, making the IBKR trading platform unique to each user’s personality and trading goals. You can also create your personal Mosaic layouts and even save them. The casual traders who find IBKR Lite attractive will find the Client Portal platform more than sufficient for their trading needs. Furthermore, both IBKR Lite and IBKR Pro traders looking for something more potent can now enjoy Interactive Brokers’ Desktop Trader Workstation access. The latter 

is the definitive trading platform for advanced traders.

The Desktop Trader Workstation platform is swift, harbouring standard features such as real-time monitoring, watchlists, alerts, and a customisable account dashboard. An options strategy lab permits you to create and submit both simple as well as complex multi-leg options orders -correlating up to five options strategies at one time.

  • Other tools include: 
  • advanced charting,  
  • a volatility lab, 
  • heat maps of the sector and stock symbol performance, 
  • paper trading and a mutual fund replicator.

The last tool helps users identify ETFs that replicate the performance of a selected mutual fund but come with lower fees. Interactive Brokers For You notifications present you with customised alerts about events that could affect a trader’s investments.

Mobile app: 

The IBKR mobile app( available to both Lite and Pro customers) is your Trader Workstation on the go

  • with advanced trading shortcuts, 
  • over 400 data columns, 
  • option exercise & spread templates, 
  • research, 
  • news, 
  • charting and 
  • scanners. 

Users may create order presets, thus prefilling order tickets for fast entry. Presets set up on Trader Workstation are also to be had from the mobile app.

Interactive Brokers(IBKR)  Tradable Assets

Interactive Brokers stands head and shoulders above all other brokers, thanks to its staggering range of offerings. As soon as technically possible, The firm adds new products based on customer demand and links to new electronic exchanges. For example, in April 2020, IBKR supersized its mutual fund marketplace, offering close to 26,000 funds from 285+ fund families.

However, IBKR does not offer cryptocurrency trading aside from Bitcoin futures. Excluding cryptocurrencies, investors can trade the following:

  • Stocks long and short (23,000 available to borrow)    
  • OTCBB (penny stocks)
  • Mutual funds (largest mutual fund marketplace globally with close to 26,000 funds. 8,300 no-load funds, , 25,000+ low or no-cost funds4,500 no transaction fee for Pro clients)     
  • Bonds: corporate, municipal, treasury, international CDs  
  • Single leg and multi-leg options, up to 8 legs   
  • Futures and futures options      
  • Robo-advisory, Interactive Advisors, website and mobile app integrated
  • International (135 exchanges connected, trading stocks, options, futures, forex, bonds, funds, and CFDs)    
  • Forex ( 115 trading pairs, 23 currencies)     
  • Fractional share trading of US stocks listed on NYSE, AMEX, ARCA NASDAQ, or BATS, besides OTC Pink US penny stocks ( average daily volume $10 million+ and market cap $400 million+). 
  •  warrants, IPOs and single stock futures

Interactive Brokers (IBKR) Commission & Spreads       

Interactive Brokers’ fee structure tends to be complex. There are three kinds of commissions for US equities.

  1. Fixed per-share pricing of $0.005 (one-half cent) per share traded with a minimum of $1 and a maximum of 1% of trade value. all exchange and most regulatory fees are included in the reckoning.
  2. Tiered per-share pricing based on monthly order activity ranging from a high of $0.035 per share for under 300,000 shares per month to $0.0005 per share for over 100,000,000 shares per month. There’s a minimum of $0.35 per trade. The pricing does not include exchange and regulatory fees. Some trading venues assess a maker-taker fee, which may be amenable to a rebate for traders.
  3. IBKR Lite program presents free trades for US-listed equities. 

The following fee discussions are premised upon the assumption that a client is using the fixed rate per-share system described in number one above. 

  • (for those trading fractional shares) A transaction for one share or less catalyses the lesser of 1% of total trade value or a minimum charge of $1. Trading 1,000 shares are $5.00. (The latter comes Free for IBKR Lite clients.)
  • The same fees are charged for OTCBB (penny) stocks. However, clients must have a minimum of $5,000,000 in their accounts to trade this asset class.
  • No per-leg fee for trading options. The client will pay $0.65 per contract for options trades with a minimum commission of $1. Low value contract fees plunge to $0.50 (premium $0.05–$0.10) or $0.25 (premium under $0.05).
  • Trading a single contract is $1. Trading 50 contracts cost $32.50.
  • Covered call trade of 500 shares plus five contracts costs $5.75.
  • Mutual fund fees are the lesser of 3% of trade value or $14.95 for funds not on the no-transaction fee list. International funds cost 4.95 Euros.
  • Margin interest for Pro customers is 1.55% for balances up to $100,000 and 2.55% for Lite customers. Substantial margin balances for Pro customers yield 0.75% interest. Margin interest for Lite customers is just 1% higher than the Pro rate.
  • IBKR Pro clients with less than $100,000 in their accounts must generate $10 or more per month in commissions or else invite an inactivity fee. You pay the difference between $10 and any commissions generated in your Pro account. no inactivity fees for Lite customers.
  • No fees to close or transfer an account.
  • No fee for exercise and assignment or for voluntary reorganisations
  • Clients may send one free wire per month; there is a fee of $10 for each subsequent wire sent. Receiving a wire costs zilch.
  • At no charge, Clients may send one paper check per month; for each subsequent check sent, there is a fee of $4.
  • Futures trades are $0.85 per contract.
  • You may trade 96 ETFs with no commission for clients on the fixed or tiered commission plans.
  • Broker-assisted equity trades cost $30 and are restricted to closing trades. Clients can place trades with the aid of a live broker for large block orders and for fixed income transactions; fees differ.

Low commissions:

If you’re a casual investor, it’s hard to top the free trades you’ll enjoy with IBKR Lite. But even advanced traders who opt for IBKR Pro will hugely appreciate the low stock and ETF commission structure at Interactive Brokers, which rewards frequent, high-volume traders at just $0.005 per share. There’s a $1 minimum trade commission and a maximum of 1% of the total trade value. Exchange and regulatory fees are included in the reckoning.

The broker also presents tiered pricing to lower rates even more. Investors trading up to 300,000 shares a month may pay $0.0035 per share; tiered rates based on trading volume plunge as low as $0.0005 per share for clients trading more than 100 million shares a month. Exchange and regulatory fees are extra obligations on this plan.

Interactive Brokers(IBKR) Leverage      

 Interactive Brokers is undoubtedly one of the most prominent providers of margin loans globally, charging extremely low interest. As per its most recent filing with the SEC, as of June 30, 2020, nearly $25.7 billion of customer margin loans were phenomenal. In the US., Interest rates on margin loans are currently 0.75% to 2.59%. Investopedia christened Interactive Brokers as its best broker for international trading, best for day trading, and best for low margin rates in 2020.

Leverage Shares exchange-traded products (“Leverage Shares ETPs”) are available commission-free to clients of Interactive Brokers LLC (“Interactive Brokers”), thanks to an agreement between Interactive Brokers and Leverage Shares PLC, adviser and sponsor of the Leverage Shares ETPs.

Interactive Brokers (IBKR) Deposit and Withdrawal

Inactivity fees: Interactive Brokers caters to active traders, and that concentration shows up demonstratively in its inactivity fees for IBKR Pro customers. Accounts with balances of $100,000 or less are obligated to meet a minimum of $10 a month in trade commissions. Else Interactive Brokers will charge the difference as a monthly fee. Accounts with an equity balance of $2,000 or less have to meet minimum trade commissions of $20. IBKR Lite doesn’t charge inactivity fees.

There is a break here for clients 25 or younger, who have a minimum monthly trade commission of a measly $3.

Interactive Brokers(IBKR) Educational and Research Support

Interactive Brokers presents a comprehensive range of investor education programs, free of charge outside the login. Traders Academy is a structured, rigorous curriculum meant for 

  • financial professionals, 
  • investors, 
  • educators, and 
  • students.

The targeted groups, therefore, are seeking a better understanding of 

  • the asset classes, 
  • markets, 
  • currencies, 
  • tools, and 
  • functionality 

Available on IBKR’s Trader Workstation, TWS for mobile, Account Management and TWS API applications. There are 45+ courses available.

Instances of course offerings include 

  • introductions to asset classes such as options, futures, forex, international trading, and bonds, and 
  • how to use margin.

There are also courses with coverage of the various IBKR technology platforms and tools. A trading glossary and FAQ are a welcome help.

Daily webinars are offered by IBKR and diverse industry experts on a plethora of topics covering how-tos for 

  • platforms and tools, 
  • options education, 
  • trading international products. 

There are hundreds of recordings available on-demand in many languages.

  • Research: Interactive Brokers presents access to a massive selection of research providers and news services, many for free, including Fundamentals Explorer( offering fundamentals data from Thomson Reuters on over 30,000 companies), in addition to 5,500+ analysts ratings, and reports and newswires from 82 companies. Other research providers available include 
  • Zacks Investment Research, 
  • Morningstar Equity Ownership, 
  • Market Realist, 
  • 24/7 Wall Street and 
  • Seeking Alpha. 

100+ additional providers are also to be had by subscription.

Interactive Brokers(IBKR) Customer Support    

  • callback service –enhanced 24-hour weekday phone line 
  • Online chat with a human agent
  • message centre
  • AI-powered IBot helps customers to online FAQs and resources

Final verdict

The massive impact Interactive Brokers Group has had on markets and trading is legendary. The title ‘Too Big to Fail’ (TBTF) fits the brokerage firm. Despite its enormous size of operations, IBKR has avoided getting embroiled in severely damaging scandals. Rather, the impression prospective clients get is one of a law-abiding, socially responsible broker. The dedication to automated trading shows that the Management has a head for abstraction. What they do at IBKR is not all for pelf – it’s also for the glory of Science and scientific trading. We have no hesitation at all in recommending IBKR to you.

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