Information: How Interactive Brokers processes a partial call of a US security

A partial call is when securities are redeemed for cash by the issuer prior to the maturity date of the instrument. Callable securities include bonds and preferred stocks. The issuer will announce the record date of the call at which time holders of settled positions may become subject to the call.

The US depository (DTCC) will run an allocation algorithm and assign called lots to brokers. While the issuer may announce a redemption ratio, there is no guarantee that the depository will assign the call to every broker holding the called issue at the defined date.

Upon receipt of the call information Interactive Brokers will run an impartial lottery in an attempt to assign the call evenly to all account holders whose positions have been determined to be against the position held at the depository It is important to note that while an account may be long shares, a portion of those shares may be lent or in some other way not considered part of Interactive Broker’s free position at the depository. As such those shares will not be considered when determining the allocation of the call. Also, when determining the final allocation, IB will attempt, but cannot guarantee, that the processing of a partial call does not result in an account holding a position which is less than a round lot. For instance, if Interactive Brokers is called for 2,000 bonds and the assignment of the partial call to a holder of 1,000 bonds would result in the holder being unable to close the resulting position, the holder may be excluded from the allocation process. Such exclusion may result in a holder being assigned on the call for a higher percentage of their bonds than the issuer has announced.

Assignment of calls will be handled shortly after the announcement by the depository. Customers will have the assigned position moved to a contra-symbol to await allocation of the funds to the account.