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Flaw in IB Workstation
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Flaw in IB Workstation

  #1 (permalink)
Trading Apprentice
Futures Experience: Advanced
Platform: IB
Favorite Futures: CL,NG,GC,ES
Posts: 5 since Aug 2015
Thanks: 3 given, 1 received

Flaw in IB Workstation

This is what I got in response from them regarding some margin related flaw in their algorithm for matching positions. Read below my chat with them:

IB: Hello, this is 'IB'. How may I help you?
ME: Hi
ME: Why is my margin going above my exposure for some put/call spreads for SPX expiring Dec 15
ME: For eg. Bear Call spread 2280/2285 margin is 5K but for 2270/2275 margin is 15K for 10 contracts
ME: which is 10K higher that the maximum exposure of 5K
ME: If I place ATM the margin is 5K
ME: This is wierd
IB: this is how the system is matching your positions:
IB: SPX OPT 20161215 2205 P
SPX OPT 20161215 2210 P
SPX OPT 20161215 2280 C
SPX OPT 20161215 2285 C
IB: SPX OPT 20161215 2230 C
SPX OPT 20161215 2230 P
SPX OPT 20161215 2235 C
SPX OPT 20161215 2235 P
IB: SPX OPT 20161215 2255 C
SPX OPT 20161215 2255 P
SPX OPT 20161215 2260 C
SPX OPT 20161215 2260 P
IB: We use an algo for matching we can't always guarantee min. margin as stated on our website
ME: This is fine
ME: There is no issue with the live trades
ME: I under stand for all three condors 15K x 3 = 45K marging
ME: The issue is when I place a new trade
IB: OK, give me a sec.
IB: I will enable something and it will tell me how it's matching the positions
ME: If I want to place following trade I get following marging:
IB: Do another order preview
IB: I will tell you how the system is matching them
IB: I mean it won't change anything but at least you will see what the sytem is doing
ME: Bear Call 2280/2285 - 5K // Bear Call 2270/2275 - 15K margin // Bear Call 2255/2260 - 5K Margin for 10 contrats
IB: You have to do the order preview
IB: I don't know how it will match the order without it
ME: I have an Order Preview right now
ME: for Bear Call 2270/2275
ME: It's asking for 15K for 10 Contracts
ME: Can you see this?
IB: It will take a few minutes
IB: it breaks up your current positions:
IB: SPX OPT 20161215 2205 P
SPX OPT 20161215 2210 P
10 K (Quantity 10)
IB: 2285/2280/2275 (10) 0
IB: 2260/2255/2260/2255 (30) 15K
IB: 2235/2230/2235/2230 (30) 15K
ME: Can you please do this for me
ME: 2270/2275 Bear Call I get 15K margin for 10 contracts when I preview
ME: Why?
IB: That is because because the system is breaking up the positions that you currently have an matching them differently
IB: This might not be optimal but I can't change the way it matching
ME: But that's wierd.
ME: I think you guys should work on your algo for better matching positions
ME: This is a serious flaw in your algo
IB: It's can't be perfect in all situations
ME: Then you should get out of the business
ME: We are paying huge commissions in trades
ME: and if we don't get even some basic matching this is wierd
IB: OK, did you have any other questions?
ME: You did not solve my current problem
IB: I cannot change this for you
ME: Tell me what's the best way to avoid such problems in future
IB: There is no way
IB: You simply have to accept how our system is matching the positions
ME: Can this be escalated to your management or someone so that they think about it?
IB: You can send a complaint ticket
IB: In account management under Support > Message Center
IB: Trade Issues > Margin
ME: Thanks

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