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Thank you for visiting the Options Tax Guy website!

There is a continuing explosion in options trading, primarily because of the power and protection provided by options.  Correspondingly, there is also a lack of information on how to report these derivative instruments on your tax return, whether you trade as an investor, trader or mark-to-market trader and whether it is inside an entity or not.  Even if you use downloadable software or something provided by your online broker, you need to know how to determine if it is even close to the correct answer.

Why should you read any further?  Basically three reasons:
•  I trade options seriously and study trading strategies in great detail.
•  I am also a Certified Public Accountant.
•  I think I can save you some money.
What Is Covered and Not Covered
Briefly, this is what we will and will not discuss on this website:

•  The tax information provided here is for US residents only.  There may be some applicability to non-US tax agencies but no guarantees can be made.
•  We will discuss options strategies and their tax implications only.  There will be NO discussion regarding commodities, currencies or futures, except as it impacts the trading and taxation of options.
•  The tax and option strategies discussed, and examples used, are in no way a recommendation to trade a particular stock or take a particular tax position.  They are for educational purposes only so that you will be a better informed options investor/trader.  See our disclaimer for further information.

When I began trading options, there was not much reliable information or software to calculate gains and losses.  Therefore, I became a more in-depth student of options taxation and wrote my own software - or more appropriately, my own process - for determining option trading gains and losses for tax reporting.  Click here to read about downloadable options tax reporting software.

We are not going to try to sell our tax preparation service to you but it is available if desired.  Click here to find out more about our services.

If you want to stop reading now and skip to the good stuff, click here to go to the Options Taxation Roadmap

Why Did I Develop This Site?

This site is designed to help you understand the tax implications of trading options.  You will learn:

•  tips for do-it-yourselfers and

•  how to present your tax preparer with the proper information

so that your tax return may be prepared as accurately as possible.

To help save you money!  Many options taxation websites (there are not that many) attempt to sell you entity setup and compliance services that can cost anywhere from $3,000 to $5,000 initially and over $2,000 per year.  A lot of that you can do yourself.

To assist you in:

•  Visually understanding basic option trades

•  Learning about how option transactions are taxed and reported

•  Determining if you qualify as a trader or an investor

•  Determining if you should trade inside an entity

•  Getting a taxpayer identification number for your trading entity

•  If you qualify as a trader, then whether to make the mark-to-market election

•  Reporting under different entity considerations

Why Listen to Me?

I have been trading stock and options seriously for almost ten years.

I am a Certified Public Accountant and have researched options trading extensively.  Click here for more on my education and experience.

I am a regular contributor on Seeking Alpha and others are listening.  Here are some of their comments to a tax thread where I contribute frequently:

“This thread is really getting good ... thanks a lot for all the contributions!”

“This thread is very informative. I suggest that we create some sort of a Hall of Fame for forum topics and post this thread there for future use of all contributors. A sticky at the very top perhaps... “

“Great to see this tax discussion evolve, especially with a CPA (Greg) being the voice of reason here.”

“the downside of making money is the tax-work that goes into it, ... and obviously you know your stuff real well!”

I hope you find it informative and useful as well!!