What do you do to keep track of trades for taxes? (trading thru IB)

Discussion in 'Interactive Brokers' started by thereuare, Jul 9, 2002.

  1. From what I read on the Tradelog site you have to "auto-assign"
    shorts with IB? This sounds like a nightmare of some type? Or is
    it not the nightmare I am thinking?...
    #11     Jul 10, 2002
  2. David I

    David I

    I'm a happy TradeLog user as well for 3 years now. I import my IB trades daily from the daily IB e-mail statements and I don't recall having any problem with the short vs long trades. I've also imported from the IB webpage with success but my standard process is just to save the email to file and import it from there.

    I've also used TradeLog with 3 other brokers statements over the past few years with great success (cybertrader, realtick and schwab). I know that occasionally I have had to have TradeLog reassign a few trades from short to long or long to short but I believe that was with my Schwab imports since Schwab has this nasty habit of not always listing the trades in the order that they actually occurred and they don't provide date/time stamps of the trades. So there are times when it would be impossible for TradeLog or anyone else but yourself really to know whether the two matched trades are in the right order or not (that the sale or the purchase should have come first.) Fortunately TradeLog has a menu command making this reassignment very quick and easy.

    I think IB's daily statements either present the trades faithfully in time order or perhaps TradeLog is using the trade number as a clue to the correct order. In either case I don't recall any problems with my IB imports. It only takes a minute each day. Useful reports, charts, etc. also. Plus you can copy the data from TradeLog and paste it into Excel or whatever if you want to do more with the data. It's also possible that I'm not looking at the data as closely as I used to now that I'm M2M. I care that the dollars and cents are right but whether the sale took place first or last I don't care so much anymore.

    The first year I used it I had 3,000+ trades to account for (I wasn't M2M that year) and it was a real life saver.

    - David I
    #12     Jul 10, 2002
  3. moffitt


    Could you please tell me if you need to list every single trade
    when doing your taxes? Or could you just hand in a bottom line figure?
    #13     Jul 10, 2002
  4. David I

    David I

    I have read of several accountants that put in a summary of all trades of each account showing the total cost basis for all trades in the year, total sales, etc. and include some note saying that detailed records are available upon request. That's what has been done for me in the past. I recommend you refer to one of the many sites that cater to trader tax issues/questions and answers for more details. Here are a few old links I have:


    - David
    #14     Jul 10, 2002
  5. alanm


    This is what I've done for about 5 years now. No problems so far.

    Beware that if you use the ticket number to sort the statement, every few months, if you do significant volume, you'll get a chunk of your trades sorted above the trades that they followed in time because the ticket number rolled over (back to 1 or 1000 or whatever they use) during the day. Maybe this is why TradeLog occasionally has a problem.
    #15     Jul 11, 2002
  6. Update on Gainskeeper free 30 day trial. They do know how to
    record IB's short sales correctly. And automatically figure in wash
    sales adjustments. But they don't know how to go to IB's site
    and take info from there. First you have to download IB
    statements into Briefcase, ect and then Gainskeeper can take
    them from there. Free trial won't let you print anything. What
    good is a free trial if you can't try everything? Also this is all on
    their website. What if the company goes bankrupt? Why don't
    they let you download software for your computer? Oh, and it's all
    Java, all Java. Gainskeeper warned of an impending wash sale
    when in fact I had two on one day. Don't know about this...
    #16     Jul 11, 2002
  7. moffitt


    David I
    Thanx. I started this in Jan. I am really confused on how to handle the tax issue.

    #17     Jul 11, 2002
  8. taxman


    It is critical that a tax return meet a minimum level of ‘completeness.’ If not, then what you have submitted is not a tax return. Consequently, the IRS may go back as far as it wants and make assessments because if you never submitted a return (i.e., it’s not a return if it’s not complete), the statute of limitations never begins to run. More importantly, you will be subject to the failure to file penalty under 6651(a).

    The Supreme Court has enumerated a four-part test for determining whether a defective or incomplete document is a valid return: "First, there must be sufficient data to calculate tax liability; second, the document must purport to be a return; third, there must be an honest and reasonable attempt to satisfy the requirements of the tax law; and fourth, the taxpayer must execute the return under penalties of perjury."

    I advise all my clients – especially daytraders – to submit all backup detail with their Sch. D. I don’t want to risk the IRS arguing that they didn’t have sufficient data to calculate tax liability.
    #18     Jul 11, 2002
  9. sempai


    I use OptionVue. Part of the program is a module called Record Keeper, and it works well for stocks, options, and futures. It also has a reports section that will give you P&L and statistics for your trading over any time period you choose.

    Another thing I like is that you can "parse" your trades, so I can keep track of my statistics for various techniques as separate accounts, then transfer them into my main account (my "Omni Account") to keep track of my overall performance.

    Unfortunately, the program is expensive, and I don't think they sell the Record Keeper as a standalone yet. I asked a year or two ago and they said they were considering it, so you might try giving them a call. Good luck.
    #19     Jul 11, 2002
  10. Nope. Nothing to do. It matches trades on a last-in first-out basis. That works well for how I look at my positions.
    #20     Jul 11, 2002