Stock Loan Fee

AAA

DEFINITION of 'Stock Loan Fee'

A fee charged by a brokerage firm, to a client, for borrowing shares. A stock loan fee is charged pursuant to a Securities Lending Agreement that must be completed before the stock is borrowed by a client (such as a hedge fund or retail investor). The stock loan fee amount depends on the difficulty of borrowing a stock – the more difficult it is to borrow, the higher the fee. The borrower must also put up collateral to borrow the stock. Acceptable collateral includes cash, Treasuries or a letter of credit from a U.S. bank. If the collateral is cash, the interest paid by the stock lender may offset part of the stock loan fee. The stock loan fee can also be called the borrow fee.

 

BREAKING DOWN 'Stock Loan Fee'

Stock lending is made possible by the fact that most shares held by brokerage firms on behalf of their clients are in “Street name” (i.e. they are held in the name of the brokerage firm or other nominee), in order to facilitate share transfer.

Stock is generally borrowed for the purpose of making a short sale. The degree of short interest therefore provides an indication of the level of the stock loan fee, since stocks with a high degree of short interest are more difficult to borrow than a stock with low short interest.

For example, assume a hedge fund borrows 1 million shares of a U.S. stock trading at $25, for a total borrowed amount of $25 million. Also assume that the stock loan fee is 3% annually. The stock loan fee on a per-day basis (360-day year is assumed) is therefore:

($25 million x 3%) / 360 = $2,083.33

A stock loan fee is an often-overlooked cost associated with shorting a stock. While short-selling can be lucrative if the trader’s view and timing are right, the costs involved with it are substantial. Apart from the stock loan fee, the trader has to pay interest on the margin or cash borrowed for use as collateral against the borrowed stock, and is also obligated to make dividend payments made by the shorted stock.

RELATED TERMS
  1. Short Covering

    Buying back borrowed securities in order to close an open short ...
  2. Short Selling

    The sale of a security that is not owned by the seller, or that ...
  3. Short Squeeze

    A situation in which a heavily shorted stock or commodity moves ...
  4. Real Estate Short Sale

    Any sale of real estate that generates proceeds that are less ...
  5. Specialist Short Sale Ratio

    A ratio used to determine the sentiment of specialists on the ...
  6. Short Sell Against the Box

    The act of short selling securities that you already own. This ...
Related Articles
  1. Active Trading Fundamentals

    Short Selling: Making The Ban

    Short selling has been around as long as the stock market, and it hasn't always been looked on favorably.
  2. Investing Basics

    Difference Between Short Selling And Put Options

    Short selling and put options are essentially bearish strategies used to speculate on a potential decline in a security or index, or to hedge downside risk in a portfolio or specific stock.
  3. Professionals

    Helping Clients Navigate Short Sales And Foreclosures

    Both buyers and sellers can benefit from a real estate professional experienced in dealing with short sales and foreclosures.
  4. Fundamental Analysis

    Short Sales For Market Downturns

    This strategy can help in market downturns, but it's not for inexperienced traders.
  5. Active Trading Fundamentals

    Short Interest: What It Tells Us

    This figure can be a real eye-opener about the market sentiment surrounding a given stock.
  6. Options & Futures

    The Truth About Naked Short Selling

    The media demonizes naked short selling, but in most cases it occurs in a collapse, rather than causing it.
  7. Active Trading Fundamentals

    Short Sales And Foreclosures: When It's Time To Move On

    Sometimes it's better to cut your losses, but foreclosures and short selling can have devastating impacts on your credit score.
  8. Active Trading Fundamentals

    Short Selling Risk Can Be Similar To Buying Long

    If more people understood short selling, it would invoke less fear, which could lead to a more balanced market.
  9. Options & Futures

    Questioning The Virtue Of A Short Sale

    This controversial strategy is blamed for making and breaking markets. Read on to learn more.
  10. Active Trading Fundamentals

    Short Selling Tutorial

    Want to profit on declining stocks? This trading strategy does just that.
RELATED FAQS
  1. How can an investor profit from a fall in the utilities sector?

    The utilities sector exhibits a high degree of stability compared to the broader market. This makes it best-suited for buy-and-hold ... Read Full Answer >>
  2. How can an investor profit from a decline in the real estate sector?

    Speculation enables investors to profit from a decline in the real estate sector. The most popular forms of speculation for ... Read Full Answer >>
  3. How can I evaluate if a stock is a short squeeze?

    To evaluate whether a stock is a short squeeze, traders should examine its fundamentals, short interest and price history. ... Read Full Answer >>
  4. What is the difference between a short squeeze and short covering?

    "Short covering" and "short squeeze" are different terms to describe a situation involving short positions. A short squeeze ... Read Full Answer >>
  5. How does days to cover a short position relate to a short squeeze?

    Days to cover a short position reveals the intensity and duration of a potential short squeeze. A short squeeze occurs when ... Read Full Answer >>
  6. What is the difference between speculation and hedging?

    Speculators and hedgers are different terms that describe traders and investors. Speculation involves trying to make a profit ... Read Full Answer >>

You May Also Like

Hot Definitions
  1. Bear Market

    A market condition in which the prices of securities are falling, and widespread pessimism causes the negative sentiment ...
  2. Alligator Spread

    An unprofitable spread that occurs as a result of large commissions charged on the transaction, regardless of favorable market ...
  3. Tiger Cub Economies

    The four Southeast Asian economies of Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines and Thailand. Tiger cub economy indicates that ...
  4. Gorilla

    A company that dominates an industry without having a complete monopoly. A gorilla firm has large control of the pricing ...
  5. Elephants

    Slang for large institutions that have the funds to make high volumes trades. Due to the large volumes of stock that elephants ...
  6. Widow's Exemption

    In general terms, a widow's exemption refers to the amount that can be deducted from taxable income by a widow, thereby reducing ...
Trading Center
×

You are using adblocking software

Want access to all of Investopedia? Add us to your “whitelist”
so you'll never miss a feature!