Interactive Brokers Launches Bitcoin, Ether Trading for UK Clients

Interactive Brokers expanded its crypto offering to the UK market, enabling British investors to trade major cryptocurrencies commission-free.

Key Insights

  • Interactive Brokers launched cryptocurrency trading for UK clients.
  • The crypto offering comes through a partnership with Paxos.
  • UK clients can trade cryptocurrencies alongside other assets from the same account at low fees with no added spreads or custody fees.

LONDON (MarketsXplora) – U.S. brokerage firm Interactive Brokers IBKR.O said on Wednesday it has launched cryptocurrency trading for clients under its UK entity, allowing them to trade and hold bitcoin, ether, litecoin and bitcoin cash alongside other asset classes.

The move to offer crypto services to British investors comes after Interactive Brokers introduced digital asset trading for U.S. clients in 2021 through a partnership with crypto exchange Paxos.

“Introducing cryptocurrency trading gives UK clients enhanced flexibility to invest across markets and asset classes while also adding exposure to digital assets,” said Gerald Perez, CEO of Interactive Brokers UK.

Like its U.S. crypto offering, the UK service enables investors to trade four major cryptocurrencies – bitcoin, ether, litecoin and bitcoin cash – directly from their brokerage accounts at low fees versus specialist crypto exchanges.

Interactive Brokers said it will charge commissions of 0.12% to 0.18% of trade value, with a $1.75 minimum per order and no added spreads or custody fees.

Cryptocurrencies on the platform are denominated in U.S. dollars, though UK clients can convert pounds to dollars at tight forex spreads.

The launch sees Interactive Brokers, a major player in global electronic trading for hedge funds and institutional investors, join a growing list of traditional brokers expanding into crypto markets.

Retail brokerage Robinhood HOOD.O recently launched a crypto staking product for European customers allowing them to earn rewards on Solana tokens.

Interactive Brokers first waded into crypto with its U.S. service two years ago. Last year it partnered with crypto firm Zero Hash to offer trading and custody, while its Hong Kong entity was licensed for retail crypto services.

In addition to Paxos-enabled spot crypto trading, the broker’s clients can gain bitcoin exposure via U.S. exchange-traded funds approved by the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Interactive Brokers reported a 42% revenue jump to $4.3 billion in 2023 as trading levels across asset classes remained elevated.

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