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Interactive Brokers Group, Inc.’s (IBKR - Analyst Report) Electronic Brokerage segment witnessed both sequential and year-over-year improvement in brokerage metrics for Jan 2014. The segment clears and settles trade globally for both individual and institutional clients.

Total customer Daily Average Revenue Trades (DARTs) were 583,000, up 27% from Jan 2013 and 22% from Dec 2013. Further, total customer accounts climbed 15% from the prior-year month and 2% from the prior month to 243,400.

Interactive Brokers recorded Cleared Customer DARTs of 529,000, up 27% from Jan 2013 and 22% from Dec 2013. Further, on an annualized basis, Cleared Average DARTs per customer account of 550,000 increased 11% from the comparable prior-year period and 21% from the prior-month level.

Interactive Brokers’ total option contracts increased 22% from the year-ago month and 16% from the prior-month level to 26.0 million. Moreover, future contracts rose 22% from Jan 2013 and 24% from Dec 2013 to 9.3 million.

Interactive Brokers also provided data related to period-end statistics for customer equity, customer credit balances and customer margin loan balances. For the period that ended in Jan 2014, customer equity was $45.7 billion, rising 33% year over year and in line with the prior-month figure.

Further, Interactive Brokers recorded customer credit balances of $25.6 billion in the reported month, increasing 15% from Jan 2013 but declining nearly 1% from Dec 2013. Additionally, the company’s customer margin loan balance of $13.9 billion at the end of Jan 2014 rose 25% from Jan 2013 and 3% from Dec 2013.

Although the Federal Reserve has initiated monetary tightening, it is not expected to substantially boost interest rates in the near future. Therefore an almost stable rate as well as an improvement in overall equity market will continue to support activities of Interactive Brokers.

Currently, Interactive Brokers carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold).

Some better-ranked investment brokers include Investment Technology Group Inc. (ITG - Snapshot Report), LPL Financial Holdings Inc. (LPLA - Snapshot Report) and E*TRADE Financial Corporation (ETFC - Analyst Report). While Investment Technology Group and LPL Financial hold a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy), E*TRADE Financial carries a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy).

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