Are you a futures trader looking to scale into positions without the burden of posting the entire overnight margin requirement? Then intraday margin may be what you’re looking for. Are you curious about which futures contracts are available for trading at tastyworks and the overnight margin requirement? If so, then please click here. However, if you wish to apply for futures trading in your margin account, then please click here for instructions.


Sections


What is Intraday Futures Margin?

Allows for 4X leverage when trading outright futures contracts

Intraday margin provides for greater leverage* for futures traders with a lower initial margin requirement (compared to the overnight requirement). Instead of posting the entire initial margin requirement, intraday margin provides four-times (4X) leverage or 25% of the initial margin requirement.


*Please Note: Exposure to greater leverage can lead to accelerated gains or losses.


Example of an account without Intraday Margin

Let’s use a real-life example. At the time this example was written, a /ESM8 (E-mini S&P 500-June ‘18) futures contract had an initial margin requirement of $6,380 (plus an additional $1.25 in commissions and $1.50 in fees). Below is an example of an account without intraday margin. The full overnight requirement is needed to place the trade.


Example of an account with Intraday Margin

Now, let’s take a look at an account with intraday margin. We’ll use the same /ES contract for this example. With intraday margin, this will allow you to post 25% of the initial margin, or $1,595 ($6,380 x 0.25), plus commissions and fees, instead of the full overnight requirement.


What is the minimum to apply for and maintain intraday futures margin?

Account Type and Level

First, you must have a margin account with our highest trading level–The Works and must be approved for futures trading.

Account Minimum for Regular Futures Contracts

Must have a minimum portfolio net liq of $10,000. Furthermore, Start of Day Net Liq must be $10,000 or higher, as determined by our clearing firm, Apex Clearing Corp. There are NO exceptions. Start of Day Net Liq typically is measured at 8:00 am (Chicago time).

Account Minimum for Micro Futures Contracts

If you are solely trading micro futures contracts and do not satisfy the account minimum for regular futures contracts, then you only need to have a minimum portfolio net liq of $2,500. Similar to intraday margin for regular futures contracts, your Start of Day Net Liq must be $2,500 or higher, as determined by our clearing firm, Apex Clearing Corp. There are NO exceptions. Start of Day Net Liq typically is measured at 8:00 am (Chicago time).


Key Points When Considering Intraday Margin

  • The intraday margin session starts at 8:30 am and ends at 3:00 pm (Chicago time), except for agricultural products, which ends at 1:20 pm.
  • Futures positions held past 3:00 pm will require the overnight margin requirement^.
  • Eligibility for intraday futures margin is dependent upon your account's start of day net liq.
  • tastyworks has the right and ability to disable intraday futures margin on accounts without notice.
  • Intraday futures margin is not available for IRA accounts.
  • You may request to remove intraday margin from your account by emailing our support team at support@tastyworks.com. To re-establish intraday margin, please contact our support team.
  • Opening an option on futures positions in the same root (/ES, /NQ, /CL, etc.) will disable intraday margin.

^Customers who cannot satisfy the overnight margin requirement may be closed out by our margin and risk team.


How to Apply for Intraday Margin

Log in to your account at tastyworks.com>My Accounts>Trading Preferences

If intraday margin fits your trading style, then all you need to do is apply for it. To apply for intraday futures margin, start by logging into your account at tastyworks.com>My Accounts>Trading Preferences or click here for a shortcut. If you do not see the ENABLE button for intraday margin, then your browser may be caching old data. To bypass this and refresh your browser please use the following keystrokes:

  • PC: CTRL + F5
  • Mac:  ⌘ Cmd + ⇧ Shift + R


Once successfully enabled, there is no waiting period. Intraday margin is immediately available after applying for intraday futures margin if your account had a Start of Day Net Liq of $10,000 or more.


Illustrated Instructions