Our spread betting calculator
You can take some of the guesswork out of spread betting. Use our example below to explore how margin requirements, as well as profit and loss, are calculated on spread bets.
How to use our spread betting calculator
1. Choose your position size
In the ‘size’ section of our calculator, put in the amount per point that you’d like to trade, betting a certain amount per point and selecting ‘buy’ if you believe the market’s price will rise and ‘sell’ if you think it’ll fall.
Let’s look at an example. Assume you want to spread bet on the price of Lloyds Banking Group shares and want to go long at £100 per point. In the size area of our spread betting calculator, you’d type in ‘100’.
2. Check the opening price and change it if you want to
Input the opening price level of your trade, which is the level of the market you’re trading. Unlike the position size (how much you’re betting), this is an asset or a market.
This can be the current price of what it actually costs to buy or sell that market on our platform, which you would type into the ‘Opening price level’ section of the spread betting calculator.
You can also enter a better price than the current market price (in other words, a lower ‘buy’ price or a higher ‘sell’), which would be executed when our quote price reaches your chosen level on the platform. In this case, you’d put your desired opening price into the ‘Opening price level’ section.
For example, say you want to buy ten Lloyds Banking Group shares. The current buy price for these is 55.88 on our platform, but you want to buy the shares only when the price reaches 55.50. So, you’d type 55.50 into the Opening price level portion of the calculator.
3. Check the closing price level and change it if you want to
In the block called ‘Closing price level’, type in the price you’re hoping to exit the trade at, which will of course be informed by your opening price level. This would be based on the level of profit you’re hoping for or the level of loss you’re comfortable with if the market moves against you.
Let’s look at another example. You’re planning on buying 10 Lloyds Banking Group shares, and you’re betting £10 per point on the price rising. You’re hoping to make a £100 profit off this trade, which would mean the Lloyds price rising by 10 points.
The opening price you’ve chosen for your spread bet is 55.50, so you type in a closing price level of 65.88 into the ‘closing price level’ portion of the spread betting calculator to determine your potential profit or loss.
4. See your margin, as well as profits and losses
Once you’ve typed your position size, an opening price level and a closing price level into the spread betting profit calculator, it’ll automatically give you your potential profits and losses in the section called ‘Resulting P&L’.
On the right-hand side of this, the calculator will show you how that trade will look in your deal ticket on the platform. You’ll see various details about your position including your margin requirement. This is the amount of capital you’re required to have in your account to open your trade.
Let’s say you want to spread bet £10 on the Lloyds price going up by 10 points. You want to see what margin amount you’d be required to put down to open this position, so you have a look at the spread betting margin calculator’s deal ticket image, which says the margin requirement in this case would be £18.61.
How to get started with spread betting
Not yet confident enough to try spread betting on a live account? You can open a free demo account with us and use £10,000 in virtual funds to practise your trading in a risk-free environment.
If you want to know more about how to spread bet, check out our host of educational resources at IG Academy, which has self-learning modules for every skill level from the most basic to more advanced trader knowledge.
Who we are
We’re the world’s and the UK’s No.1 choice for spread betting and CFD trading.1 For over 47 years, we’ve been a market leading financial provider. We’re especially known for spread betting – which we invented in 1974.
Today, we offer spread bets and CFDs to around 313,000 retail traders all over the globe, with over 17,000 markets to trade on, including forex, indices, shares, commodities and more.
If you’re an investor who prefers owning assets outright, you can also buy and sell thousands of shares and ETFs with us. Choose your own on our share dealing platform, or opt for a Smart Portfolio managed by one of our experts.
1 Based on revenue excluding FX (published financial statements, October 2021)
2 Please note that the margin requirement examples featured are based on retail margin rates only. Margins for professional accounts and other traders may vary.