Account Opening

BBAE offers a range of account types including MyMarket cash brokerage accounts, MyMarket margin brokerage accounts, and MyAdvisor investment advisory accounts.

This FAQ covers the essential information for getting started with a new BBAE account.

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I am new to investing, how do I get started?  

If you’re new to investing and wondering where to begin, we’re here to guide you through the process. BBAE offers a host of educational tools designed to ease you into the world of investing:

  1. Start with Our FAQ: Visit the FAQ section here. It’s a treasure chest of information where you can find answers to common questions that most new investors have.
  2. Explore the BBAE App: Within the BBAE app, we have the Watchlist and Discover sections. These features allow you to observe market trends, understand potential investment opportunities, and learn how different financial instruments work.
  3. Read the BBAE Blog: The BBAE Blog is regularly updated with articles that cover the basics of investing, as well as more advanced topics. These articles can help you build a solid foundation of investment knowledge.
  4. Reach Out for Support: Should you have any specific questions or need further assistance, the BBAE support team is ready to help. Contact us via the in-app chat or support@bbae.com.

Remember, investing is a journey, and starting with the right resources can make all the difference. Take your time to learn and grow your confidence at your own pace. Welcome to the world of investing with BBAE!

What types of accounts does BBAE offer?

BBAE offers individual self-directed brokerage accounts through our wholly-owned subsidiary, Redbridge Securities LLC, a FINRA/SIPC member, and investment advisory accounts through BBAE Advisors LLC, our SEC-registered investment advisor. For entity account inquiries, contact us at support@bbae.com.

MyMarket Accounts:

Emphasizing personal control and autonomy, allowing users to manage their investments using our platform’s trading tools and resources.

  • Cash brokerage accounts: The default account type for buying and selling securities with available cash funds only. Suitable for most individual self-directed investors building a portfolio using a mix of stocks, bonds, ETFs, mutual funds, and other assets.
  • Margin brokerage accounts: For eligible clients seeking leverage and short selling ability. Margin accounts let you borrow funds from BBAE to buy securities worth more than your deposited cash, up to certain limits. Approval for margin trading privileges is based on eligibility criteria, including experience, risk profile, and account equity. Ongoing margin interest charges apply for borrowed amounts. Margin trading involves additional risks and is not suitable for all investors.
  • Options brokerage accounts: For eligible clients seeking options trading privileges for hedging risks or speculation. Approval is based on options experience, risk tolerance, account equity, and other factors. Options trading allows for more complex strategies but also higher risks. Options trading privileges are not suitable or approved for all client accounts.

MyAdvisor Accounts:

Catering to investors seeking a hands-off approach to investing while benefiting from professional expertise. BBAE MyAdvisor partners with market-leading asset allocators to provide active portfolio management, offering personalized, diversified portfolios tailored to each user’s unique financial goals and risk tolerance. This approach combines the convenience of automated robo-advisory services with the insights and expertise of professional investors, allowing users to focus on their long-term objectives. Investment advisory accounts are offered through BBAE Advisors LLC, an SEC-registered investment advisor.

Entity brokerage accounts:

For businesses, partnerships, trusts, and other legal entities. Opening an entity account typically requires additional documentation to establish authorization and verify controlling individuals. Account types and trading privileges available depend on the entity structure and financials. Please contact us for details on opening a corporate or institutional account.

Why was my application rejected? 

The reason applications are rejected can vary, but typically, it occurs when we are unable to verify your identity based on the information provided. Additionally, if we have requested additional documentation for your application, it will only be held for one week before rejection. To avoid this, we recommend promptly responding to any requests for additional information. 

Please note our commitment to transparency; if your application is rejected, we will provide you with detailed information via email. If you have further questions, do not hesitate to contact our support team. 

Why do I need to verify my address, and what documentation is acceptable?

At BBAE, we may require customers to verify their address in certain cases, especially if it is not provided on their government-issued photo ID. This verification process is necessary to fulfill legal and regulatory requirements.

To verify your address, we accept various forms of documentation, including government-issued documents, bank statements, or utility bills. These documents must display your name and residential address. Please note that we require a complete, unedited copy of the document, rather than just a partial one.

If you have any questions about the specific information needed for your account setup or how we use that information, please feel free to ask. We are more than happy to provide clarifications and additional details to help you understand what is required to get started with BBAE.

What is margin trading and how does it work?

Margin trading refers to the practice of borrowing funds from BBAE to purchase securities. In this process, BBAE, through its wholly-owned subsidiary Redbridge Securities, acts as the lender, and you utilize the securities held in your account as collateral for the margin loan. Margin trading allows you to amplify your buying power, but it also entails risks and expenses.

How do I get started with margin trading?

To get started with margin trading, follow these steps:

  1. Understand the risks: Margin trading involves borrowing money to purchase securities, which can magnify gains and losses. It’s crucial to understand the potential risks, including the possibility of losing more than your initial investment.
  2. Apply for a margin account: To initiate margin trading, you need to apply for a margin account in the BBAE app. This process may involve providing additional documentation and information about your financial situation.
  3. Meet the minimum account equity requirement: To trade on margin, you must maintain a minimum account equity of $2,500.
  4. Monitor your account: Once your margin account is approved, closely monitor your investments and margin requirements. Be aware of the potential for margin calls if your account equity falls below the required maintenance margin level.
  5. Develop a risk management strategy: To minimize potential losses, consider using stop-loss orders, diversifying your portfolio, and maintaining a healthy cash balance.

Margin trading is not suitable for all investors due to the additional risks involved. Please carefully consider your investment objectives, financial situation, and risk tolerance before deciding to trade on margin.

How can I use margin to purchase securities?

Once you have fulfilled the necessary requirements, you can use margin to purchase securities. Nonetheless, it is essential to acquaint yourself with the margin regulations and comprehend the related risks. Margin trading can serve as a valuable instrument for seasoned investors, but acquiring a thorough grasp of the concept is vital before beginning.

Keep in mind that margin trading entails particular risks and might not be appropriate for every investor. It is recommended to meticulously evaluate your investment objectives, tolerance for risk, and knowledge of margin trading prior to participating in such endeavors.

What are the risks of margin trading?

Margin trading entails several risks, including but not limited to the following:

  1. Margin calls: One of the primary risks associated with margin trading is the possibility of a margin call. If the value of the securities in your account drops below the maintenance margin requirement, you may be issued a margin call. This call necessitates restoring your account balance to meet the minimum margin requirement by depositing additional cash or marginable securities. Failure to meet the margin call deadline could result in BBAE liquidating your securities to repay the margin loan.
  2. Leverage risk: Margin trading amplifies both gains and losses due to the leverage it provides. As a result, unfavorable market conditions can lead to significant losses, even surpassing your initial investment.
  3. Interest expense: Margin loans come with interest charges that can accumulate over time. These expenses can impact your overall investment returns.
  4. Liquidity risk: During periods of high market volatility, you may encounter difficulties in selling your securities at the desired price. This risk could worsen if many investors are trying to sell the same type of securities simultaneously.
  5. Forced liquidation: If you are unable to meet a margin call, the brokerage has the right to sell your securities, potentially at an unfavorable price, to cover the loan. This forced liquidation can result in significant losses.

It is crucial to be aware of these risks and to assess your financial situation, investment objectives, and risk tolerance before engaging in margin trading. Margin trading may not be suitable for all investors.

What are the interest expenses and other risks associated with margin trading?

When participating in margin trading, it is important to be aware of interest expenses and other associated risks:

  1. Interest expenses: You are required to pay interest on the outstanding margin balance. The interest rate may vary depending on the brokerage and the size of the loan. These interest charges can accumulate over time and impact your overall investment returns. For BBAE’s current margin interest rates, please click here.
  2. Losses exceeding initial investment: Margin trading leverages your investment, which can amplify both gains and losses. Consequently, you may experience losses that surpass your initial investment, particularly during unfavorable market conditions.
  3. Additional collateral requirements: In the event of a market decline, you may need to deposit more collateral in the form of cash or marginable securities to maintain your margin requirements. This could strain your financial resources.
  4. Margin calls: If the value of the securities in your account falls below the maintenance margin requirement, you may receive a margin call, necessitating additional cash or securities to restore the account balance. Failing to meet the margin call deadline may result in the forced liquidation of your securities to repay the margin loan, which could lead to significant losses.
  5. Forced liquidation: If you cannot meet a margin call, your brokerage has the right to sell your securities without your consent, potentially at unfavorable prices, to cover the outstanding margin loan.

It is vital to understand and assess these risks and your financial situation, investment objectives, and risk tolerance before engaging in margin trading. Margin trading may not be suitable for all investors.

What is the coverage limit provided by SIPC?

SIPC provides coverage for up to $500,000 in total, which includes a maximum of $250,000 in cash held in your account.

It’s important to note that SIPC coverage does not protect against market losses or declines in the value of your investments. For more information about SIPC and its coverage, visit www.sipc.org.

What does SIPC insurance protect against?

In the unlikely event that BBAE’s wholly-owned broker-dealer, Redbridge Securities, a SIPC member, experiences financial failure, SIPC insurance protects your securities and cash held in your account. It covers situations where assets cannot be returned due to theft or loss. It’s important to note that SIPC insurance does not protect against market losses or declines in the value of your investments, nor does it cover all types of investments. For more information about SIPC and its coverage, visit www.sipc.org.

What does SIPC insurance not cover?

SIPC insurance does not protect against normal market losses or declines in the value of your investments or account balances. For more information about what SIPC insurance does and does not cover, visit www.sipc.org.

Which types of brokerage accounts are covered by SIPC?

SIPC insurance applies to various types of brokerage accounts, including cash brokerage accounts and margin brokerage accounts. It’s important to note that not all types of investments within these accounts may be covered by SIPC. For more information about which accounts and investments are covered, visit www.sipc.org.

Are joint brokerage accounts covered by SIPC?

Yes, for joint accounts, each account co-owner is individually covered up to the standard maximums, which include up to $500,000 in total with a maximum of $250,000 in cash. In the case of joint accounts with rights of survivorship, the surviving co-owner(s) receive coverage for the entire account balance after the passing of the first co-owner. For more information about SIPC coverage for joint accounts, visit www.sipc.org.

Where can I find more information about SIPC coverage?

For more information about SIPC coverage, including which types of accounts and investments are covered, as well as details on the coverage limits, visit the Securities Investor Protection Corporation (SIPC) website at www.sipc.org. You can also consult their frequently asked questions, brochures, and other resources available on their website to learn more about SIPC and its role in protecting investors.

What if my country is not on the list of eligible countries?

We are continuously working to expand our services to more regions. If your country is not currently listed as eligible, we appreciate your patience and suggest checking back periodically as we update the list.

How do I verify my phone number and email address?

It is important that you verify both your phone and email during the registration process. To do so, please follow the steps below: 

  • After initially entering your email and creating your password, you will be prompted to verify your email and phone number.  
  • Follow the onscreen instructions in the app to enter the verification code that was sent to your email address. 
  • Repeat the same process for your phone number. 

Please note that verification codes expire after twenty minutes. If you have further questions, please contact our support team.  

Why was I asked to provide a copy of my government-issued ID? 

We were unable to verify your identity based on the information provided. This could happen if the information given is mistyped or entered incorrectly. We request this documentation so that we can verify your identity and comply with industry regulations. It is important that when submitting your government-issued ID you provide clear copies of both sides of the document.  

Why was I asked to provide documentary evidence of my social security number? 

We were unable to verify your identity based on the information provided. This can happen if the information given is mistyped or entered incorrectly. It can also happen if you have a freeze on your information for identity theft protection. We request this documentation so that we can verify your identity and comply with industry regulations. Acceptable documents include your social security card, W-2, or letter from the IRS or SSA.     

How do I check the status of my application? 

To see the status of your application, go to the Account tab in the BBAE app. There you will see one of the following statuses:

  • Processing Application – your application is currently being reviewed.
  • Additional Documentation Required – to proceed with your application, additional documentation is required. More on that here.
  • Application Declined – your application was declined. More on that here

We aim to complete the account approval process within one to two business days if all necessary information is promptly provided. However, if additional verification or documentation is required, the process may take longer. Our goal is to open your account as soon as possible. Once your account is approved and opened, you will receive a welcome email.

My application was approved, what are the next steps? 

Congratulations! To begin investing with BBAE, the first step is to fund your account. You can do this by ACH, wire, or Account Transfer (ACAT). More on that here. 

If you have questions or need further assistance funding your new BBAE account, please contact our support team. We are here to help and strive to make the funding process as straightforward as possible.  

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