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Margin Lending

More shares

Borrow against your existing portfolio of shares or managed funds.

More diversity

With access to more funds, invest in a wider range of securities.

More liquidity 

Take advantage of opportunities - without using your own capital.

While a margin loan can increase your gains, it can also magnify your losses. It's important that you consider your individual financial circumstances.


Margin lending is a gearing strategy where an investor borrows funds from a lender to invest in a portfolio of listed securities and/or managed funds.

The main purpose of using a margin loan is to amplify the returns from any increase in the value of underlying assets than otherwise would have been possible if an investor used purely their own capital. It is a higher-risk strategy that can also magnify losses.

Most margin loans also have a Margin Call feature, potentially putting investors into a Margin Call should the value of the underlying assets decline below a defined level.

In the event that the investor's portfolio security value falls below a specified level (the Margin Call LVR) a Margin Call is required. Where a Margin Call is made the investor must reduce their gearing level, below the Margin Call LVR, by either depositing additional cash or securities to the lender, or by selling securities in the portfolio. 


  • Borrow against an extensive list of approved shares and managed funds. This enables you to diversify your portfolio and not rely too heavily on the performance of any one investment.
  • Combine variable rate and fixed rate* loans, with interest payable in advance or arrears within the one Facility to meet your individual needs.
  • Paperless loan drawndown - complete an online, paperless request to drawdown on your nab margin loan and have the proceeds credited to your nominated account.
  • No application or ongoing service fees^.
  • Rate discounts for large loans.
  • While you may be able to borrow up to 80% of the market value of certain approved assets, you can establish a margin loan with a lower gearing level if that’s what you’re more comfortable with and suits your needs.
  • Instalment gearing provides you with the ability to invest in approved managed funds on a monthly basis, allowing you to drip feed your money into the market rather than investing it all at once.
  • Monitoring your investment portfolio is easy with online access to your Facility details 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
  • Use an existing approved portfolio held by another person or company as security for your loan. The other party's portfolio security becomes a Guarantor for your loan.
  • All applications are subject to approval which is generally provided within 48 hours for individual and joint applicants.

How does a margin loan work?

With a margin loan you provide existing approved investments in shares, managed funds or cash as security for the loan. 

You can then use the borrowed money to access a greater range of investment opportunities, as you are not limited to investing your own capital.

Like other investment strategies, margin lending involves an element of risk. Just as there is potential for growth, there is also potential for loss. It is important that you consider your individual financial circumstances.


  1. Increase capital gains - by borrowing funds to increase the size of your portfolio, you can amplify both the gains and losses of that portfolio.  Note: You should however, view your total portflio performance inclusive of the borrowing expenses (interest) and the risk of the portfolio.
  2. Increase portfolio income - by borrowing funds to increase the size of your portfolio, you can increase the income generated from that portfolio. Note: You should however, view your total portflio performance inclusive of the borrowing expenses (interest) and the risk of the portfolio.
  3. Small initial investment - You can start small.  Unlike investing in residential property, you don't need to borrow large sums of money to start (or build on) your investment portfolio.
  4. Diversification -  A sound strategy for reducing investment risk is to diversify one's investment portfolio. By having more to invest, you can potentially diversify your portfolio and spread your exposure across a wider variety of investments.
  5. Liquidity If you need access to your funds, you can generally sell your assets to assist you in managing your cash flow requirements should you require funds for other purposes.
  6. Tax deductions - entirely dependent on the investor's individual financial situation, margin loan interest payments may be tax deductible.  Note: You should always consult a taxation professional to advise you on any and all tax issues, including the effect of margin lending on your financial and tax positions.


While a margin loan can increase your gains in a rising market, it can also magnify your losses when the market declines. Consequently, you should consider investing in a diversified portfolio of quality assets and ensure you have enough time (and discipline) to ride out investment market fluctuations.

The table below highlights some of the risks involved in gearing and how you could potentially manage each of these:

Risk description How to manage the risk
Margin Call
  • Gear conservatively
  • Diversify investments 
  • Frequently monitor your investments and margin loan 
  • Deposit additional funds or securities 
Lowered security LVR
  • Gear conservatively 
  • Diversify investments
Suspended securities
  • Diversify investments 
  • Gear conservatively 
  • Choose investments of strong financial health  
Rising interest rates
  • Gear conservatively and ensure you have sufficient capacity to absorb higher interest repayments.  Note: This assumes that interest has not been capitalised. 
  • Apply portfolio income (dividends & distributions) against the loan balance. 

Margin Loan Interest Rates

Balance Variable rate (p.a) Refinance
variable rate (p.a)
Fixed rate
(1 yr)
Interest yearly in
Less than $250,000 6.45% 5.95% 6.15%
$250,000 - less than $500,000 5.70% 5.20% 5.40%
$500,000 - less than $1.0m 5.45%
4.95% 5.15%
$1.0m + 5.20%
4.70% 4.90%

Interest rates effective from 18 April 2017. Rates apply to new loans only

Opening a margin loan with nabtrade 

Step 1: Open a new nabtrade trading account and select margin loan under 'How would you like to pay for your trades?' when completing the application form.

Step 2: Once you’ve completed the application form, we’ll contact you to confirm the details we need to complete the setup of your NAB Margin Loan.

Step 3: When the information is received, we’ll set up your NAB Margin Loan Facility - usually within 48 hours. 

Fully integrated International NAB margin loan

The same NAB margin loan supporting a domestic trading account can now be used to support nabtrade international share trading.  Features include:

  • An additional 750+ international securities approved as margin loan security with an LVR of 60%.
  • An integrated international and domestic securities trading experience using a NAB margin loan.
  • Trading, market data, news and stock recommendations, all on the one platform.


National Australia Bank Limited ABN 12 004 044 937 AFSL and Australian Credit Licence 230686 (NAB) is the issuer of the CMA and the NAB Equity Lending Facility and recommends you consider the PDS for both of these products before making any decisions regarding these products. The PDS documents are available at