Interactive Brokers will do now currency conversions automatically

Baptiste Wicht

The Poor Swiss
Staff member
Hi

Here is something I should probably have mentioned earlier: As of April 2024, IB will now do currency conversions for you if you do not have the necessary currency. Before, you had to do a manual conversion before a trade, but now IB will do it for you if have not done so already! Of course, this is only for cash accounts, because a margin account would go into a negative balance in this case.

It is important to know that the fee is different between these two systems:
  • Manual conversions cost 0.002% of the conversion or 2 USD, whichever is higher
  • Automated conversions cost 0.03% of the conversion
So, below 6500 USD, the automated conversion will be cheaper!

What do you think about this feature? I think it's pretty nice for simplifying the flow of investment on IB, and it can even save investors some money.

You can read more about it on my IB Review:

 
Very interesting, thanks.

Where do I find the details of currency conversion fees on IB? I looked at in my account at Statements > Activity but did not find anything there.
 
I looked at in my account at Statements > Activity but did not find anything there.
Normally, you should be able to see them under Activity statements. If you look into Trades, you will see something like USD.CHF with fee. The last time I did, it cost me 1.82 CHF (2 USD at the time).
 
Normally, you should be able to see them under Activity statements. If you look into Trades, you will see something like USD.CHF with fee.

Found it! (didn't think of a currency conversion as a trade)

Looking at this statement brings me to another question: why are there no fees on the USD>CHF conversion? I don't really understand what these conversions are (dividends of VT?). Two conversions are for very small amounts, the third one is a bit larger (289.25).

interactive_brokers_trades.jpg

I love this new automatic currency conversion, since I often do conversions below 6,500 USD.
 
Interesting, I don't know why you get these. The very small one may mean IB converted automatically a tiny balance at the end of the day, but the other two are different. Normally, your dividends should not be automatically converted.
 
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