Can an IRA Be a Marketable Security?

An Individual Retirement Account is a long-term savings account created by the U.S. Government and regulated by the Internal Revenue Service.


Securities are investable assets, such as stocks, bonds and mutual funds, that reflect ownership or "security" in a particular company. Different types of securities offer different rights regarding the assets or earnings of an issuer.

Difference Between Marketable and Non-Marketable Securities

Marketable securities are easily bought or sold in any public market, such as the New York Stock Exchange. Non-marketable securities are investments which are not readily convertible to cash, such as limited partnership interests or private investments.


An IRA functions much like a regular investment account, except for special tax-advantaged features, such as the tax-deferred growth of investments and the tax-deductibility of most contributions.

Marketable Securities in IRAs

The IRS restricts you from investing IRA funds in certain commodities, such as rugs or other collectibles. Beyond these restrictions, most any marketable security is approved for purchase within an IRA.

IRA as Marketable Security

An IRA is an investment account, rather than being an investment itself. While the assets within an IRA can be sold, and the account closed, the IRA itself cannot be sold, so it cannot be considered a marketable security.