Minimum account balance and deposit at Saxo Bank

This article discusses what the minimum account balance (if required) and the minimum deposit (if required) at Saxo Bank stand for. Find out in which cases you must have a minimum balance at Saxo Bank.

Have you ever accidentally mixed up the minimum account balance with the minimum deposit? Rest assured, you’re not the only one. To prevent any confusion, we'll tell you what they are and how they differ from each other.

Saxo Bank offers margin and derivative trading: You can trade stocks/ETFs on margin, meaning you can borrow money from the broker to increase your trading position. The following derivative products are also accessible:

Derivative product selection at Saxo Bank
Saxo Bank Swissquote TradeStation Global
Futures Yes Yes Yes
Options Yes Yes Yes
Forex Yes Yes Yes
CFDs Yes Yes Yes

Note that most brokers offer several account types. If you open a cash account, you don't have to worry about margin requirements because you can only invest the funds that you deposited in the account. Some brokers don’t even require a minimum deposit for cash accounts. In turn, a margin account allows you to borrow money from your broker so you will have to comply with margin rules.

The minimum account balance is the amount that you're required to maintain on your account when you use leverage/margin in trading. Having this amount available is necessary to avoid negative consequences such as a margin call or the liquidation of your assets. If the amount of funds in your account falls below the minimum account balance requirement, you will have to deposit additional funds.

Bear in mind that it is your responsibility to ensure your account is properly funded. You should monitor your account at least on a daily basis to make sure you always meet your broker's margin requirements. It is not a good idea to wait until you get a margin call, because if you miss it, your broker may liquidate some of your assets and you could end up with considerable losses.

The minimum deposit is the minimum amount required for opening an online brokerage account. While some brokers do not require a minimum deposit, others do. The minimum deposit requirement means that you will need to transfer this amount to your brokerage account from your bank account in order to start trading. You can check the minimum deposit at Saxo Bank here.

The term margin is used widely in the financial world. Note that margin requirements for different asset classes, such as stocks and options, may be different.

There are general margin requirements for all stocks when you trade stocks/ETFs on margin at a US-regulated broker. On the other hand, if you trade derivative assets such as futures or options, the minimum account balance depends on the specific asset you trade as well as the broker’s requirements. In both cases, you have to comply with margin requirements and maintain the minimum account balance at all times.

Minimum account balance at Saxo Bank
Minimum account balance for stock/ETF margin trading

When trading stocks and ETFs on margin, the broker itself determines the minimum account balance you must always maintain in your Saxo Bank margin account.

Minimum account balance at Saxo Bank
Minimum account balance for derivative products

Saxo Bank offers derivative products to its clients:

  • Futures
  • Options
  • Forex
  • CFD

Futures minimum account balance

Saxo Bank gives access to futures trading. You can trade futures on 23 exchanges.

For futures contracts, futures exchanges set initial margin requirements as a percentage of the contract to be traded. There isn't a legal minimum balance that you have to maintain to day trade futures. When volatility is high, future exchanges may increase margin requirements. The maintenance margin of S&P 500 futures (ticker: ES), for example, stood at $11,000 as of March 1, 2021.

Remember that margin requirements for different asset classes are different.

The futures margin is the amount of money that you must deposit and keep with your broker when you open a futures position. It is not a down payment and you do not own the underlying commodity.The futures margin generally amounts to a smaller percentage of the notional value of the contract, typically 3-12% per futures contract as opposed to up to 50% of the face value of securities purchased on margin.

Source: Global derivatives marketplace CME Group

Options minimum account balance

Saxo Bank provides options on 23 exchanges.

Options trading strategies involve different degrees of risk and complexity. Some riskier trade types, like selling call options on stocks you don't own or writing an uncovered put option, can only be executed if you have a margin account. However, less risky strategies, such as buying a call option, are permitted with cash accounts, too.

Remember that when you trade options, the minimum size is 1 contract, which represents 100 shares of the underlying asset.

Forex minimum account balance

Saxo Bank provides forex trading for 182 currency pairs.

When trading forex, you exchange currencies against each other. For example, if you think the euro will strengthen against the dollar, you go long EUR/USD and go short if you think the opposite is bound to happen. Margin requirements and the minimum account balance are sometimes higher for exotic currencies as these tend to be more volatile.

CFD minimum account balance

Saxo Bank provides CFDs (contracts for difference), so if you trade CFDs at Saxo Bank, you are required to maintain a certain account balance.

CFDs allow you to bet on whether asset prices will go up or down without buying the underlying asset. Inherently, they carry higher risks. At some CFD brokers, you can easily open an account even with just a couple of dollars and jump straight into CFD trading. The amount you need to start CFD trading also varies by asset classes. Some assets, such as oil, need a higher initial amount than others. In Europe, the initial amount and the initial margin requirements are set by the regulator.

If you trade CFDs, the balance in your account will change constantly in line with the gains or losses accrued and the size of the trades. If the amount in your account drops below the required margin, you will receive a margin call to deposit more money.

Minimum account balance at Saxo Bank
Minimum amount to open an account at Saxo Bank

The minimum amount needed to open a Saxo Bank account is $2,000. You can see in the table below how this amount stacks up against the competitors of Saxo Bank.

Minimum amount to open an account at Saxo Bank vs its competitors
Saxo Bank Swissquote TradeStation Global
Minimum deposit $2,000 $0 $1,000

The Saxo Bank minimum deposit varies based on the account type you choose and the country you reside in. For example, the Saxo Bank UK minimum deposit is $50,000 for Platinum accounts and $1,000,000 for VIP accounts. You can check here the minimum deposit for classic accounts at different countries.

Minimum account balance at Saxo Bank
Bottom line

Now you know what the minimum deposit and the minimum balance are at Saxo Bank and you understand the difference between the two. If you want to dig deeper, read our article on margin calls and short selling.

The minimum deposit is the minimum amount required to open a new online broker account.

In turn, the minimum account balance is the amount on your margin account or on your account for trading leveraged products that you’re required to maintain to avoid fees.

Don't forget that your maintenance margin requirement may change constantly and it is your responsibility to keep an eye on it. You should place additional deposits or close some other positions on your account if it is getting too close to the maintenance margin level. You definitely want to avoid getting that dreaded margin call or wait until your broker liquidates some of your assets and positions.

Author of this article

Gergely Korpos

Author of this article

Gergely is the co-founder and CPO of BrokerChooser. His aim is to make personal investing crystal clear for everybody. Gergely has 10 years of experience in the financial markets. He concluded thousands of trades as a commodity trader and equity portfolio manager.

Gergely Korpos

Co-founder, CPO

Gergely is the co-founder and CPO of BrokerChooser. His aim is to make personal investing crystal clear for everybody. Gergely has 10 years of experience in the financial markets. He concluded thousands of trades as a commodity trader and equity portfolio manager.

Everything you find on BrokerChooser is based on reliable data and unbiased information. We combine our 10+ years finance experience with readers feedback. Read more about our methodology

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