Interactive Brokers for dummies


Yes, I saw that one too :+1:
But I still prefer @Bojack approach of selling instead of buying (don’t like to have to do calculations to check the amount I can buy).

PS: Já somos pelo menos 3 portugueses por aqui, estamos a crescer :smile:


i did not tried that way yet. Seems to be quied a recent option right? But did it work out for you that way? Do you still get charged 20 CHF instead of 1.99 CHF?


If you are trading once in a while why not use the mobile app? Its quite simple and straight forward.


I managed to do it successfully the way @Bojack said and paid 1,97 CHF commission to convert my CHF to USD.

Basically I’ve put the full amount I wanted to convert and pressed “preview order” to check the commission. There, it said the commission will be 1,97 CHF for the amount I wanted to convert, so I modified my order to subtracted this commission (tbh, I subtracted 5 CHF to be on the safe side, but then 3 CHF stayed in my account).

This was the way I’ve found to not have negative CHF balance.

PS: The 20 CHF fee was on the test account while trying to convert 1 million.

How to Send Money to Your Interactive Broker's account for free

Hi all,

I have a question as well on purchasing USD for CHF.
First time I did it I followed Bojack’s approach, with using FXCONV instead of IDEALPRO, through TWS interface.
Once performed, I had no visible entries for USD.CHF pair in my portfolio.

However when I went to convert to USD through my phone for the second time, I believe only IDEALPRO was available.
After I used that method, USD.CHF pair showed up under my positions.

Now my questions are:

  1. Any disadvantages when using IDEALPRO vs FXCONV? (e.g. if I want to trade while on the move, away from my laptop)
    –> Self-answered (as I see now that it has been addressed earlier in this thread; and further explained here): No, it just seems to create a virtual FX position. Useful if you want to track evolution of your CHF-USD pair.
  2. Is it actually beneficial, if it’s necessary for future tax reports to have that USD.CHF pair reported, for profits/losses?

Thanks and happy new stashing year everyone!


Guys, if your account base currency in USD, then of course you don’t want to keep any CHF on this account. That’s why I wrote my guide. You sell all the CHF you have, so you know the exact amount of CHF that you want gone. The fee is then charged in USD.

However, if your account is in CHF then it’s nice to keep some CHF on the account, for fees.

why would you chose CHF as base currency though? all your ETFs are anyway in USD, you sure you want to track your performance in CHF? The dividends from ETFs also come in USD. The account management fee is 10 USD. Etc.

In his example he got charged 20 CHF, because he exchanged 1’000’000 CHF (one million). The fee is 0.2 * 0.0001 * trade value, but no less than 2 USD.


Maybe for this part?
“Your base currency determines the currency of translation for your statements”

Have no idea if necessary though, haven’t had a chance to have to provide anything for tax authorities or such yet. Do they perhaps require values in CHF?

Edit: further reading here points to a couple more reasons.
Maybe the most important one: sending CHF inbound?


No, they require values in the currency of the ETF.

I have read this thread and for the most part people are just writing nonsense there. And where did you read a reason why is it good to have base currency equal to your bank account, from which you are sending the money? I send money from CHF and my base currency is USD. What’s the problem with that?


I thought the base currency might determine the IBAN that gets generated when you request a deposit. :slight_smile:

Good to learn none of the above makes sense, thanks for correcting.
I just referenced what I found, don’t have as direct a knowledge as you guys.


The IBAN depends on the currency that you want to send, you explicitly select the currency before you get the IBAN. You think you can only send your base currency? No, you can send any currency you want, from any place you want. Provided that the account is in your name. At least that’s how I understand it.