Margins

Our tiered margining system helps keep your costs down. Margins reflect the size of your position, so smaller bets benefit from even lower rates due to associated market liquidity.

What is margin?

Spread betting on margin means you only need to contribute a relatively small amount of capital to gain large exposure to a market. Margin is therefore the amount of money you need to open a position, as defined by the margin rate. 

For example: if you were to buy £500 of shares through a traditional broker, you’d need to pay the full £500 upfront to own them (plus the associated broker charges).

However, as a spread bet is a leveraged product, you don’t need to pay the full value of your position in order to deal. Instead, you’ll only need to put up a fraction of cost.

There are two types of margin:

  • Initial margin
  • Maintenance margin

Initial margin

The initial margin is the minimum amount you’ll need to open a position.

Maintenance margin

The maintenance margin is additional money we might request from you if your position moves against you. This is to ensure you have enough money in your account to fund the current value of the position at all times – covering any running losses.

Margin at IG

We offer competitive margins across a range of markets, while our tiered margining means that smaller deal sizes generally benefit from better market liquidity.

These positions attract our lowest margin rates. You can also apply stops to restrict potential losses and reduce your margin requirement (tier one only).

Margin requirements

Here's a summary of our tier one margin requirements for some of our most popular markets. For all tier one margins, you can reduce your margin requirement with the use of stops.

See each market's charges and costs for individual margin rates.

Margin requirements with non-guaranteed stops are capped at the amount of margin for no stop (i.e. if the stop is wide then the calculations used may give a higher margin requirement than the calculation for no stop. If this happens then we limit the margin to the amount required for the same position with no stop).

Shares

Shares Margin requirement
Apple 5%
Barclays 5%
BHP Billiton 5%
GlaxoSmithKline 5%
Vodafone 5%

How are share margins calculated?

No stop

Bet size x price (in points) x deposit factor (%)

E.g. £10/point Vodafone at a price of 194:

£10 x 194 x 5% = £97 margin

Stop

(Deposit requirement for no stop x slippage factor %) + (bet size x stop distance from current level)

E.g. £10/point Vodafone at a price of 194, with a non-guaranteed stop 3 points away:

(£97 x 30% + (£10 x 3) = £59.10 margin

Guaranteed stop

Bet size × stop distance (in points) 

E.g. £10/point Vodafone at a price of 194, with a guaranteed stop 11 points away and 0.3% limited risk premium (194 x £10 x 0.003 = £5.82):

£10 x 11 + £5.82 = £115.82 margin

Forex

Forex Margin requirement
Spot FX EUR/USD 0.5%
Spot FX GBP/USD 1%
Spot FX AUD/USD 0.5%
Spot FX EUR/JPY 0.5%
Spot FC USD/CHF 1.5%

How are forex margins calculated?

No stop

Bet size x price x margin percentage

E.g. £5 GBP/USD:

£5 x 15347.0 x 0.25% = £191.84 margin

Stop

(Deposit requirement for no stop x slippage factor %) + (bet size x stop distance from current level)

E.g. £5/pt GBP/USD with a non-guaranteed stop 20 points away:

(£191.84 x 20%) + (£5 x 20) = £138.37 margin

Guaranteed stop

Bet size x stop distance (in points) 

E.g. £5 GBP/USD with a guaranteed stop 20 points away and 1-point limited risk premium:

(£5 x 20) + (£5 x 1) = £115 margin

Indices

Stock index Margin factor (Margin factor is the variable used to multiply your bet size, to define your margin requirement)
FTSE 100 0.5%
Wall Street 0.5%
Germany 30 0.5%
US 500 0.5%
US Tech 100 0.5%

How are indices margins calculated?

No stop

Bet size x margin factor

E.g. £10/ point of the FTSE 100:

£10 x 23 = £230 margin

Stop

(Deposit requirement for no stop x slippage factor %) + (bet size x stop distance from current level)

E.g. £10/pt of the FTSE 100 with a non-guaranteed stop 12 points away:

(£230 x 20%) + (£10 x 12) = £166 margin

Guaranteed stop

Bet size × Stop distance (in points) 

E.g. £10/point of the FTSE 100 with a guaranteed stop 12 points away and 1-point limited risk premium:

(£10 x 12) + (£10 x 1) = £130 margin

See our full tiered margin list (PDF, 986KB).

Commodities

Commodity Margin factor (Margin factor is the variable used to multiply your bet size, to define your margin requirement)
Spot Gold 9
Spot Silver (5000 oz) 20
High Grade Copper 470
US Light Crude 65
Brent Crude 75

How are commodities margins calculated?

No stop

Bet size x margin factor

E.g. £5/point Brent Crude:

£5 x 75 = £375 margin

Stop

(Deposit requirement for no stop x slippage factor %) + (bet size x stop distance from current level)

E.g. £5/pt Brent Crude with a non-guaranteed stop 30 points away:

(£375 x 20%) + (£5 x 30) = £225 margin

Guaranteed stop

Bet size x Stop distance (in points) 

E.g. £5/pt Oil – Brent Crude with a guaranteed stop 30 points away and 4-point limited risk premium:

(£5 x 30) + (£5 x 4) = £170 margin