In light of regulatory guidance, Kraken has phased out the availability of margin trading for certain Kraken clients who are residents of the U.S. from June 23, 2021 onwards.
Margin trading will remain available to U.S. clients that meet specific requirements. For U.S. clients that don’t meet these requirements, margin trading has been phased out as of June 23, 2021.
From June 23, 2021 onwards, U.S. clients that don’t meet the below requirements will only be able to reduce, close out or settle their existing margin positions, but will not be able to open new margin positions. These clients’ existing margin positions will continue to be subject to their original 28-day margin obligation term limit.
All qualifying clients will have a 365 day margin obligation limit.
What are the requirements for U.S. clients to continue margin trading?
For U.S. clients to be eligible for margin trading on Kraken, they will need to self-certify as an Eligible Contract Participant (ECP) as defined under U.S. law (Section 1a(18) of the Commodity Exchange Act).
U.S. clients who do not have Intermediate or Pro accounts will first need to get verified to at least the Intermediate level before having the opportunity to self-certify as an ECP. All new U.S. Intermediate or Pro clients and all existing U.S. Intermediate or Pro clients who have not previously traded margin will be asked to self-certify as to their ECP status the first time they do a margin trade. If you have previously self-certified and your ECP status has changed, or if you made an error in the self-certification process, please contact Support.
Two key ways to qualify as an ECP under this definition are:
For individual clients -- You are required to have more than $10 million in assets invested on a discretionary basis. In general, this means assets (for example, cryptocurrencies, stocks, bonds, mutual funds, real estate investments, cash held for investment purposes) for which you make the decision to trade or invest, as opposed to assets that another person trades or invests on your behalf. The $10 million in assets do not include your personal residence or other assets you own that are not part of your trading or investment portfolio.
For institutional clients -- The institution you represent must have more than $10 million in total assets. This test focuses on gross assets, as opposed to net assets (assets minus liabilities). If you represent an institution, and the institution doesn’t qualify as an ECP under the $10 million in total assets test, your institution may qualify as an ECP under one of the other categories of the ECP definition. Please review the categories and contact Kraken support if the institution you represent qualifies for at least one of them.
Additional Information on ECP Status
As a U.S. client, it is your responsibility to understand the requirements to qualify as an ECP under U.S. law. If you have any questions about whether you qualify as an ECP, you should consult your legal advisor.
Under the Terms of Service, you or the institution you represent is required to provide accurate and truthful information and promptly update your or its Kraken Account information. If you self-certify as an ECP and your status changes, or you certify on behalf of your institution and its status changes, you or your institution must notify Kraken promptly.
Please note: Your self-certification will be subject to review. If in our due diligence we require more information from you to verify your status as an ECP, we will email you with further questions.