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Interactive Brokers - SGD now available for funding

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Old 02-01-2011, 09:53 PM   #1
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Anyone uses "interactive brokers" for trading stocks?

http://www.interactivebrokers.com/ibg/main.php

Claims to have very low trading fees, but the description seems complicated, anyone has any experience with this company?
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Old 03-01-2011, 06:40 PM   #2
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http://www.interactivebrokers.com/ibg/main.php

Claims to have very low trading fees, but the description seems complicated, anyone has any experience with this company?
Hi chienwei, yes Interactive Brokers is indeed a established broker in the US.

You need a initial deposit of USD $10k or roughly around SGD $13k to start trading. After registration, you have to wire transfer the amt to your account.

Advantage is in their trading fees; US Stocks is USD $1 for 200 shares. In US, they dont have minimum amount of shares that you need to buy, such things as 1 LOT (1000 shares). You can buy 1 share of GOOGLE. Basically, if you buy 1000 shares of APPL, you only pay USD $5.

For Forex, you only pay 1 pip for EUR/USD, other currency pairs i am not too sure.

The disadvantage is that their customer services is lousy (you can take it as there is no customer service) and as for charting, you can take is as no charting tools provided as it sucks also. But if you have a IB account, you can hook up to http://www.ninjatrader.com/ to provide you with a better charting platform for free.

Each month, you need to make a minimum trades, otherwise they will charge you USD $30+ or so.

[This is my own personal advice and does not represent any HWZ Money Mind Moderators]
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Old 04-01-2011, 07:14 PM   #3
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http://www.interactivebrokers.com/ibg/main.php

Claims to have very low trading fees, but the description seems complicated, anyone has any experience with this company?
I don't have first-hand experience with them, but in short - yep, they're legit. They offer such low brokerage because they cater to professionals, they trade vast volumes, and they internalise a lot of their flow (so they pick up the bid-ask spread on the trade as well as the brokerage).

Their minimum activity fee is $10 USD a month, which still makes them cheaper than your average Singaporean broker as long as you trade at least once a month. They've got an HK arm as well, if you'd rather not set up an account with their USA-ian arm for whatever reason.

IB is not for n00bs, though - apparently their Trader Workstation software is pretty user-unfriendly, and as aldray says, their customer service can be a bit hit-or-miss. (Also, they don't offer Singaporean stocks, which is a bit of a downer - if they did, I'd switch my accounts there in a heartbeat.)
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Old 05-01-2011, 03:11 PM   #4
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I was about to open an account with them as well but SAXO makes life easier and possibly worth the higher fees.

I had 2 questions i never had answered regarding Interactive Brokers. perhaps someone here knows the answers

1) Is all SGD funding automatically exchanged into USD regardless if you are investing into USD funded assets or just keeping the cash in the acct? or can you hold both SGD and USD in the account at any one time

2) You need a min. 10k usd to open the account but does this also mean the value of the acct can not go below this?

3) How does taxation work. do they withold US taxes and then make us fill out a form to get it back? or they let us take care of everything ourselves?


thanks for the help guys.
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Old 05-01-2011, 07:27 PM   #5
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1. Only US$.
2. $10K to open. Don't think you need to maintain a minimum of $10K.
3. You can file W8 form electronically. No US tax withholding.
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Old 05-01-2011, 07:57 PM   #6
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1. Only US$.
2. $10K to open. Don't think you need to maintain a minimum of $10K.
3. You can file W8 form electronically. No US tax withholding.
Are you sure about #3? I thought IB automatically withheld the 30% dividend tax on US equities (I know Saxo does).

Regarding #1 - you might only be able to fund in USD, but you can hold non-USD cash balances in your account, and switch your cash between currencies as well.
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Old 06-01-2011, 06:00 PM   #7
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Don't think they have multi currency account. As for W8 submission... I did many times liao.... fill the electronic form ... type in your full name in signature box and click submit button.
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Old 06-01-2011, 09:59 PM   #8
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thanks guys.

out of curiousity - do you guys have a USD based acct or a SGD one and exchange SGD for USD each time you take USD based positions? trying to figure out which one is best to have
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Old 07-01-2011, 02:41 PM   #9
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If you don't trade much US stock then just use any local broker. If you use local, best to have US$ and S$ currency account. If not, you suffer conversion loses for each trade. Keep in mind that local broker charge can easily double that of US and there is custodian charges for holding US stock in your local broker account.
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Old 07-01-2011, 05:58 PM   #10
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Are you sure about #3? I thought IB automatically withheld the 30% dividend tax on US equities (I know Saxo does).

Regarding #1 - you might only be able to fund in USD, but you can hold non-USD cash balances in your account, and switch your cash between currencies as well.
I think everyone, regardless US citizens / non-US suffer this 30% tax on dividends. But if im not wrong US citizens suffer taxes on capital gains whereas we don't.
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Old 13-01-2011, 12:05 AM   #11
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Since this is a US brokerage, is account opening more difficult compared to local brokerage that can trade in US stocks? How do you transfer the funds back to Singapore?
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Old 30-01-2011, 03:51 PM   #12
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thanks people. Seems more complicated than I imagined, will stick to using local brokerages for US stocks for now, while i try to find out more abt IB
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Old 30-01-2011, 07:17 PM   #13
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1 tip for u.. u definitely losing out alot alot more if u use a sg broker to trade a us exch stock, compared to using a us broker to a us exch, unless ur trading is low vol, or say <20k a month that type.
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Old 31-01-2011, 12:47 PM   #14
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Anybody knows if we can subscribe for US IPOs ?
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Old 19-02-2011, 08:13 AM   #15
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What's the best way to withdraw funds in foreign brokerages like IB or OptionsXpress?

Does any of you open a USD current account here?

I realised it costs alot if we convert to SGD and deposit it in bank...the forex spread is v. wide.
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