IB - Straighten out your f'in Bookkeeping!

Discussion in 'Retail Brokers' started by maryp, Nov 27, 2009.

  1. maryp


    I'm about to change from IB because of its lack of dilligence in its handling of our taxes. I'm in the process of doing my amended taxes for 2008, and everytime I try to do my taxes I have a problem with IB's recordkeeping.

    Interactive brokers used to offer gainskeeper or captools, but it seems they cannot make up their minds, and have taken them away. All they offer now is html, pdf, and txf files for Turbotax.

    So, I am using Turbo Tax. After importing my Schedule D worksheet from IB, Turbotax comes up with an error on every trade.

    IB doesn't do our trade gains/losses correctly. Nevermind that. They should at least get their f'in bookkeeping straight, and fill out the 1099's they send us correctly. The 1099's are always incorrect and blank where information should have been filled in by them.

    I honestly don't know how they get by the IRS with this sloppy form of recordkeeping.

    I'd strongly suggest that IB stop wasting time screwing around constantly making changes to their TWS trading platform, and work on something to help us, the customer, their bread and butter for a change. IB, straighten up your bookkeeping and help out your customers more with their taxes.
  2. Get yourself a stack of schedule D's and keep them current every day with your trades.

    Easiest way that I know to do it. If the year on the form is not current, white it out and replace it with the current year. The IRS doesn't mind.

    The last time I posted this on ET way back in 03 it was well received.
  3. Interesting. I imported hundreds of trades from IB into TurboTax with no problem last year. It was mostly option spreads and long and short stocks.
  4. usman88


    just curious, how much %age you guys (US citizens) pay and are trading losses adjustable against other income?
    Most importantly do you guys have to give proofs of all transactions or a mere statement of annual profit/loss is sufficient?
  5. Somehow, I have a feeling the primary cause of the "IB bookkeeping problem" is due to the OP...
  6. maryp


    What makes you think the problem is caused by me? You sound like a rep who always blames the customer.

    Grant it, it is my ultimate responsibility to do my taxes correctly. IB, as well as other brokers, also have a legal responsibility to provide certain accurate information to the IRS and their clients.

    To be more specific, here are some of the problems I've had doing taxes from my IB account:

    1. Yearly statements don't match adding up daily or monthly statements

    2. The 1099-B that IB sends is often inaccurate and incomplete

    3. IB does not offer a free and easy way for assimilating the necessary info needed for taxes

    4. You are forced to either buy Turbotax or jump through hoops with free software in order to figure your trades correctly (gains/losses, wash sales, etc.) with correct balances so that you can probably work with them on a Schedule D or other IRS forms that may be necessary.

    I don't believe I am the cause of this problem. If you do some googling, you'll find that others have complained about the same problems above.
  7. Because this "XYZ company screwed up ABC" comes up all the time on the web, the OP does not provide any evidence, the OP is anonymous, we don't hear the other side, it is not even possible to tell whether the OP works for a competitor, it is not possible to see whether the OP is one more of a long line of disturbed ET posters that we constantly get

    And the accusation that IB gets it wrong all the time is highly unlikely. They would be under investigation of they had the stream, of these kind of accounting problems from a lot of people.

    Instead, they get a huge % of the business from traders, as measured by broker reviews here, and the large number of threads and posts dedicated to them.
  8. Hope you don't consider this off topic, but you fellas are talking about taxes here. **** I recently read on an internet post by a supposedly very knowledgeable person that profits from short sale trades are exempt from IRS taxes because there is no "capital gain". I have always declared my short sale profits on my taxes, and my CPA has never questioned or commented about this. Who is right here? Thanks.
    **source of "bad???" info =
    play #12
  9. No I disagree here. IB does do its trades and accounting right. Though I think what you are complaining about is that it is not accounting that you want.

    From what I see and manage their accounting is based on Mark To Market and general market valuation. Is this compatible with ledger accounting? I don't know I am not an accountant. Is this compatible with standard trade in and trade out? Probably not, because standard trade in and trade out does not really work.

    Why do I say this? I wrote a backtesting platform and I had to implement my own accounting engine to keep track of trades, extra costs, slippage, taxes, etc. And let me tell you IB has it right... In the end I copied the IB accounting and it works fine for me. Though I can understand how you might not like it for taxes.

    My suggestion to you is to get somebody to write a piece of code for you that will track the trades to how you like it. After all IB gives you that ability.
  10. maryp


    I am not a competitor, and do not believe IB does correct accounting. Additionally, IB does not even complete the 1099-B correctly. They leave lines 8, 9, 10 & 11 blank.

    I've seen many complaints about this from other IB users over the years. Logic tells me that if there are other complaints about this from IB users, it is more likely than not true, rather than blaming the poster. I am also aware that there are shills here who will try and dismiss or negate my honest complaint, though.

    In using TurboTax 2008, the problem was with with my options trades that I allowed to expire worthless. Luckily, there were not many of these. It seems Turbotax doesn't understand $0 in that instance, so I had to enter those trades manually.

    All I ask is that IB accurately and completely fill out the 1099s. Additionally, I think IB should do more to help their customers with Schedule D and importing them into more tax tools.
    #10     Nov 29, 2009