Securities-Based Borrowing

  • Potential to access the value of your investments to meet borrowing needs.
  • Doesn’t have to disrupt your investment strategy.
  • Securities-based lines of credit have been growing in popularity. They’re flexible and relatively easy to establish.

Financial flexibility through borrowing

Have you ever considered harnessing the value of your investment account for borrowing? Securities-based borrowing gives you access to money based on the value of your own securities. Securities-based borrowing has special risks and is not suitable for all investors. Please read the “borrowing against investments is not without risks” section that follows.

Have you ever considered using the value of your investment account for borrowing?

It may provide financial flexibility to help meet your borrowing needs. That depends on the type of investments you own, how much you want to borrow, and for what purpose.

Securities-based loans defined

A securities-based line of credit helps you to meet your liquidity cash needs by unlocking the value of your investments without selling them.

This type of borrowing may be easier to obtain and more flexible than other choices. It depends on whether you have sufficient eligible securities to use as collateral.

Some of the advantages of securities-based borrowing include:

  • Access to cash when you need it, potentially avoiding capital gains taxes from selling securities1
  • Typically lower rates than other forms of credit
  • No set-up, non-use, or cancellation fees
  • Ability to borrow between 50% to 95% of your eligible assets, depending on the collateral and type of credit you receive

These lines of credit can be used for many purposes. Common uses include:

  • Home renovation
  • Real estate purchase1
  • Expenses such as taxes
  • Boat, car, or other luxury purchase
  • Business opportunity

You can use a non-purpose securities-based line of credit for any purpose except to purchase, carry, or trade securities; refinance or repay margin loans; or repay any other loan used for securities purchases. A margin account is the only securities-based line of credit you may use to purchase securities.2

Borrowing against investments is not without risks

Remember you are pledging securities whose value is affected by events outside your control.

Remember you are pledging securities3 whose value is affected by events outside your control. The risks of securities-based borrowing include:

  • Market fluctuations that may cause the value of pledged assets to decline
  • A decline in the value of your securities that could result in selling your securities to maintain equity
  • Adverse tax consequences as a result of selling securities*

*Wells Fargo Advisors and its affiliates are not tax or legal advisors.

Wells Fargo Clearing Services, LLC, Priority Credit Line Interest Rates

Household Assets Under ManagementInterest Rate
<$250,000Base Rate + 0.75%
$250,000<$500,000Base Rate - 0.75%
$500,000<$1 millionBase Rate - 1.25%
$1 million<$2.5 millionBase Rate - 1.75%
$2.5 million<$5 millionBase Rate - 2.25%
$5 million+Base Rate - 2.75%

Wells Fargo Clearing Services, LLC, Margin Interest Rates*

Margin Debit BalanceStandard Rates
$0 to $24,999.99Base rate + 3.50%
$25,000 to $49,999.99Base rate + 3.00%
$50,000 to $99,999.99Base rate + 2.50%
$100,000 to $249,999.999Base rate + 2.00%
$250,000 to $499,999.99Base rate + 1.50%
$500,000 to $999,999.99Base rate + 1.00%
$1 million to $4,999,999.99Base rate + 0.50%
$5 million to $9,999,999.99Base rate + 0.00%
$10 million and upBase rate - 0.50%
Cash AccountBase rate + 3.50%, regardless of debit size or household assets under management
Household Assets Under ManagementAdjuster
< $250,0000%
$250,000 to $499,999.99- 0.5%
$500,000 to $999,999.99- 1.00%
$1 million to $2,499,999.99- 1.50%
$2,500,000 to $4,999,999.99- 2.00%
$5 million and up- 2.50%

Base rate as of December 20, 2018 = 7.75%

The Base Rate is set at our discretion with reference to commercially recognized interest rates, industry conditions relating to the extension of margin credit, and general credit market conditions. The annual rate of interest will change without prior notice to you, in accordance with changes in our Base Rate.

1 Financing real estate with a securities-based line of credit carries risk and may not be appropriate for your needs. A complete assessment of your circumstances is needed to help you determine which type of loan provides the best fit. All loans are subject to credit approval. Wells Fargo & Company and its affiliates do not provide tax or legal advice. Please consult your tax or legal advisors to determine how any credit may apply to your own situation. Whether any planned tax result is realized by you depends on the specific facts of your own situation at the time your taxes are prepared.

2 Margin borrowing may not be suitable for all investors. When you use margin, you are subject to a high degree of risk. Market conditions can magnify any potential for loss. The value of the securities you hold in your account, which will fluctuate, must be maintained above a minimum value in order for the loan to remain in good standing. If it is not, you will be required to deposit additional securities and/or cash in the account or securities in the account may be sold. Clients are not entitled to choose which securities in their accounts are sold. The sale of their pledged securities may cause clients to suffer adverse tax consequences. Clients should discuss the tax implications of pledging securities as collateral with their tax advisors. An increase in interest rates will affect the overall cost of borrowing. Wells Fargo Advisors and its affiliates are not tax or legal advisors. Margin strategies are not suitable for retirement accounts. Please carefully review the margin agreement, which explains the terms and conditions of the margin account, including how the interest on the loan is calculated.

3 Subject to minimum equity requirements.

Secured PrimeLine, Secured Term Loan, and Custom Loans are offered by Wells Fargo Bank, N.A. (member FDIC), a banking affiliate of Wells Fargo & Company. Other banking services from Wells Fargo Bank, N.A., and its affiliates are available through the Lending & Banking Services Group of Wells Fargo Advisors. All loans and lines of credit are subject to credit approval, verification, and collateral evaluation. Initial credit decision is subject to your meeting specific underwriting requirements, and final approval will be based upon your satisfying these requirements. Certain restrictions apply. Programs, rates, terms, and conditions are subject to change without advance notice. Products are not available in all states.

Priority Credit Line is offered by Wells Fargo Advisors and lending and margin accounts are carried by Wells Fargo Clearing Services, LLC (WFCS). Wells Fargo Advisors is a trade name used by WFCS and Wells Fargo Advisors Financial Network, LLC, Members SIPC, separate registered broker-dealers and non-bank affiliates of Wells Fargo & Company.

Securities-based lending has special risks and is not suitable for everyone. If the market value of a client’s pledged securities declines below required levels, the client may be required to pay down his or her line of credit or pledge additional eligible securities in order to maintain it, or the lender may require the sale of some or all of the client’s pledged securities. Wells Fargo Advisors will attempt to notify clients of maintenance calls but is not required to do so. Clients are not entitled to choose which securities in their accounts are sold. The sale of their pledged securities may cause clients to suffer adverse tax consequences. Clients should discuss the tax implications of pledging securities as collateral with their tax advisors. Wells Fargo Advisors and its affiliates are not tax or legal advisors. An increase in interest rates will affect the overall cost of borrowing. All securities and accounts are subject to eligibility requirements. Clients should read all lines of credit documents carefully. The proceeds from securities-based lines of credit may not be used to purchase additional securities, pay down margin, or for insurance products offered by Wells Fargo affiliates. Securities held in a retirement account cannot be used as collateral to obtain a loan. Securities purchased in the pledge account must meet collateral eligibility requirements.

Please read all lines of credit documents carefully. The proceeds from some securities-based lines of credit may not be used to purchase additional securities, pay down margin, or to pay premiums for variable life insurance policies or for insurance products offered by Wells Fargo affiliates, including life, disability, long-term care, personal or commercial property, casualty, and liability insurance products. Securities held in a retirement account cannot be used as collateral to obtain a loan. Securities purchased in the pledge account must meet collateral eligibility requirements. Other account fees, fund expenses, brokerage commissions, and service fees may apply.

Next steps

  • Look into the types of securities-based line of credit options.
  • Find out how much you can borrow relative to the value of your investment account.
  • Understand the risks associated with pledging securities for the term of the loan.
  • Explore current interest rates, the cost to borrow, and the effect on borrowing costs should interest rates rise.