Information Relating to Customer Protection of Assets

The below information applies to trading of non-US index options, OTC CFDs and non-US index futures (when combined with non-US index options)

 

Interactive Brokers (U.K.) Limited


Customer Assets
Interactive Brokers (U.K.) Limited (“IBUK)’’ is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (“FCA“), register no. 208159. IBUK is a wholly owned subsidiary of Interactive Brokers Group (IBG LLC). IBUK provides client money and client asset services in accordance with FCA Client Assets regulations “CASS”.

Client money is protected as follows:
Client money rules apply to all regulated firms that receive money from a client, or hold money for a client in the course of carrying out MiFID business and/or designated investment business.

Client money is entirely segregated from IBUK’s own money. In the event of a failure of an authorised firm, clients’ monies held in the segregated accounts will be returned to the clients rather than being treated as a recoverable asset by general creditors. If there was a shortfall, the client may be eligible to claim for compensation from the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (“FSCS”).

Client money is ring-fenced in separate bank accounts which are held in trust on behalf of the clients. These accounts are distributed across a number of banks with investment grade ratings to avoid a concentration risk with any single institution. When IBUK makes the selection and appointment of a bank to hold client money, it takes into account the expertise and market reputation of the bank, its financial standing and any legal requirements or market practices related to the holding of client money that could adversely affect clients' rights.

IBUK will allow client money to be held in a client transaction account by an exchange, a clearing house or an intermediate broker but only if the money is transferred to them for the purpose of a transaction or to meet a client’s obligation to provide collateral for a transaction.

Each day, IBUK performs a detailed reconciliation of client money held in client money bank accounts and client transaction accounts and its liabilities to its clients to ensure that client monies are properly segregated and sufficient to meet all liabilities in accordance with the FCA’s CASS rules. All monies credited to such bank accounts are held by the firm as trustee (or if relevant, as agent).

FCA regulations also require IBUK to maintain a CASS Resolution Pack to ensure that in the unlikely event of the firm's liquidation, the Insolvency Practitioner is able to retrieve information with a view to returning client money and assets to the firm's clients on a timely basis.

Financial Services Compensation scheme

Interactive Brokers (U.K.) Limited (“IBUK”) is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (“FCA”) as an investment firm and a participant in the Financial Services Compensation scheme (“FSCS”). Certain eligible clients qualify for
compensation under the FCA Compensation rules.

The main points relating to eligibility are:

  • FSCS pays compensation only to eligible claimants when an authorised firm is in default and will carry out an investigation to establish whether or not this is the case.
  • FSCS pays compensation only for financial loss and the limits for U.K. Investment firms are covered below.
  • The FSCS was set up mainly to assist private individuals, although smaller businesses are also covered.
  • Larger businesses are generally excluded.

Investments

FSCS provides protection if an authorised investment firm is unable to pay claims against it e.g. when an authorised investment firm goes out of business and cannot return assets to its clients. Assets classified as investments for authorised investment firms under the FSCS include stocks and shares, futures, options, cfds, other regulated instruments and money deposited by clients.

Compensation Limits

The actual level of compensation you receive will depend on the basis of your claim. The FSCS only pays compensation for financial loss. Compensation limits are per person per authorised firm. Compensation levels are subject to change and for current details please refer to the FSCS website at http://www.fscs.org.uk / .
 

The below information applies to customers who were or are continuing to trade all products (except metals and OTC CFDs) through IB LLC.

 

Interactive Brokers LLC (“IBLLC”)


Customer Assets
Customer money is segregated in special bank or custody accounts, which are designated for the exclusive benefit of customers of IBLLC. This protection (the SEC term is “reserve” and the CFTC term is “segregation”) is a core principle of securities and commodities brokerage. By properly segregating the customer's assets, if no money or stock is borrowed and no futures positions are held by the customer, then the customer's assets are available to be returned to the customer in the event of a default by or bankruptcy of the broker.


Securities accounts with no borrowing of cash or securities
Securities customer money is protected as follows:

  • A portion is deposited at 14 large U.S. banks in special reserve accounts for the exclusive benefit of IBLLC's customers. These deposits are distributed across a number of banks with investment-grade ratings so that we can avoid a concentration risk with any single institution. No single bank holds more than 5% of total customer funds held by IBLLC.
  • A portion may be invested in U.S. Treasury securities, including direct investments in short-term Treasury bills and reverse repurchase agreements, where the collateral received is in the form of U.S. Treasury securities. These transactions are conducted with third parties and guaranteed through a central counterparty clearing house (Fixed Income Clearing Corp., or “FICC”). The collateral remains in the possession of IBLLC and held at a custody bank in a segregated Special Custody Account for the exclusive benefit of customers. U.S. Treasury securities may also be pledged to a clearing house to support customer margin requirements on securities options positions.
  • Customer cash is maintained on a net basis in the reserve accounts, which reflects the net credit balances of customers in excess of customer debit balances. To the extent any one customer maintains a margin loan with IBLLC, that loan will be fully secured by stock valued at up to 200% of the loan.
  • Current SEC regulations require broker-dealers to perform a detailed reconciliation of customer money and securities (known as the “reserve computation”) at least weekly to ensure that customer monies are properly segregated from the broker-dealer's own funds.

Customer-owned, fully-paid securities are protected in accounts at depositories and custodians that are specifically identified for the exclusive benefit of customers. IBLLC reconciles positions in securities owned by customers daily to ensure that these securities have been received at the depositories and custodians

Commodities accounts

Commodities customer money is protected as follows:

  • A portion is pledged to futures clearing houses to support customer margin requirements on futures and options on futures positions or held in custody accounts identified as segregated for the benefit of IB's customers.
  • A portion is held at commodities clearing banks/brokers in accounts identified as segregated for the benefit of IBLLC customers to support customer margin requirements.
  • Cash in commodities accounts is protected in accordance with US commodities regulations. CFTC rules prohibit an FCM from commingling customer funds with its own money, securities or property. Customer funds must be separately accounted for and segregated as belonging to commodity or option customers. The titles of accounts in which customer funds are deposited must clearly indicate this and show that the funds are segregated as required by the Commodity Exchange Act (“CEA”) and CFTC Rules. Customer funds may not be obligated to anyone except to purchase, margin, guarantee, secure, transfer, adjust or settle trades, contracts or commodity option transactions of commodity or option customers. These requirements also extend to U.S. customers trading on foreign exchanges.

Securities accounts with margin loans

For customers who borrow money from IBLLC to purchase securities, IBLLC is permitted by securities regulations to pledge or borrow stock valued at up to 140% of the value of the loan. Typically, IBLLC lends out a small portion of the total stock it is permitted to lend out.

  • As an example, at June 30, 2011, IBLLC lent $800 million value of customers' stock out of the $13.0 billion made available to it by margin customers.
  • When IBLLC lends customers' stock, it must put additional money into the special reserve accounts for the exclusive benefit of customers. In the example above, the full value of $800 million of customer stock that was lent was segregated in the special reserve accounts.

Account Protection

Customer securities accounts at IBLLC are protected by the Securities Investor Protection Corporation (“SIPC”) for a maximum coverage of $500,000 (with a cash sublimit of $250,000) and under IBLLC's excess SIPC policy with certain underwriters at Lloyd's of London for up to an additional $30 million (with a cash sublimit of $900,000) subject to an aggregate limit of $150 million. Futures, and options on futures are not covered. As with all securities firms, this coverage provides protection against failure of a broker-dealer, not against loss of market value of securities.

For the purpose of determining a customer account, accounts with like names and titles (e.g. John and Jane Smith and Jane and John Smith) are combined, but accounts with different titles are not (e.g. Individual/John Smith and IRA/John Smith).

SIPC is a non-profit, membership corporation funded by broker-dealers that are members of SIPC. For more information about SIPC and answers to frequently asked questions (such as how SIPC works, what is protected, how to file a claim, etc.), please refer to the following websites:


http://www.SIPC.org

http://www.finra.org/InvestorInformation/InvestorProtection/SIPCProtecti...

or contact SIPC at:

Securities Investor Protection Corporation
805 15th Street, N.W. - Suite 800
Washington, D.C. 20005-2215
Telephone: (202) 371-8300
Facsimile: (202) 371-6728

 

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