, Answering FAQ'sTurboTax Employee
If you sold stock in the past year you should be looking for a 1099-B statement from your brokerage company that summarizes information for the year.
Often you will receive a consolidated statement that includes sections labeled 1099-INT for interest, 1099-DIV for dividends, and 1099-B for stock or bond sales. Many times all of these sections are included even if you only have information in one or two of them.
Consolidated tax statements follow no standard format, and come in a wide variety of styles. Many of the year-end tax statements look similar to the account statements you receive during the year from the same broker, bank, or mutual fund company.
Is all of the Information I Need on My Consolidated Tax Statement?
With recent changes in reporting rules for securities, more information is being included on your consolidated statements. Information about recent changes in reporting rules for stock sales is in our article, Why does TurboTax Ask About My Year End Broker Statement?
For older security purchases, some information may still be limited and may not be complete or accurate. Be sure to check what is being reported against your own records and statements. You may need to contact your brokers for information about older trades in particular, or look for needed information in old account statements from when you bought the securities.
Although more records are becoming available through broker forms, we recommend you keep your own records of all your investment purchases and verify what is being reported to you. Intuit's Quicken product is a great tool for tracking your investments including the cost information needed to complete your taxes.
What Dates Do I Enter?
If you bought the item you later sold, enter:
- For the Date Acquired, use the date you bought the asset. For stocks or bonds, the date you acquired the asset is the trade date. This should be on your purchase confirmation statement from your broker.
- For the Date Sold, use the date shown on your Form 1099-B or 1099-S, or the date you sold the item.
TurboTax will use your dates to decide if the sale should be reported as a short-term or long-term sale.
If you inherited the item, enter the word "inherited" for the date you acquired the item. When you sell inherited assets, you have a long-term gain or loss.
If you sell a group of similar assets, such as shares in a mutual fund, you can enter the word "various" for the date you acquired your assets. Then you can tell us how long you owned the assets you sold them. Before you use "various," be sure to sort your sales by the date you sold them and the length of time you owned them so that your sales dates and holding periods will be correct. You need to separate holding periods for the assets you owned into two groups:
- A year or less for short-term sales
- More than a year for long-term sales
If you sold collectibles, put those sales in another group. They could be taxed at a higher rate than other gains.
Important Note: If you enter a word instead of a date in a date field, such as "various," you must tell us whether to report your sale as a long or short-term sale. If you don't give us this information, we will treat your transaction as a long-term gain or loss.
What Do I Enter For Sales Price and Cost, or Basis?
Most of the time, your sales price is the amount on the Form 1099-B (or 1099-S for selling real estate) from your broker.
If you sold an asset and didn't use a broker or a real estate agent, enter the amount shown on your sales contract.
Your cost is usually the amount you paid for your property, but there are some special circumstances where you will report something different. See IRS Publication 550, Investment Income and Expenses, for details about how to figure your cost or basis when you sell property that you:
- Received as a gift
- Received for work you did
- Received in exchange for other property
- Received from a stock split or stock distribution
- Purchased when you exercised stock rights or stock options
- Purchased by reinvesting dividends, including mutual fund shares
- Acquired at a premium
- Added improvements to, or depreciated
- Acquired in other ways
What if I Got Incorrect Information?
If you receive incorrect information on the forms from your broker, you should gather your documentation for those transactions and contact your financial institution to get it straightened out. Be sure to correct any questions prior to filing your tax return. The information on the documents you receive are also reported to the IRS and will be matched against what you report on your tax return.
If you are importing information into TurboTax from your financial institution, it is important the imported information match the tax information reported to you on paper documents.
Where do I enter my stock sales?
Here's how to enter your stock sales in TurboTax:
- Select Federal Taxes (Personal in the Home & Businesss edition).
In Online TurboTax, click the bars at the upper left corner to show Federal Taxes on the selection list; enlarge the screen if needed to show the left side selection list.
- Select Wages & Income, and in the new screen, click Explore on My Own.
- Scroll down the Your Income Summary screen until you see the Investment Income group.
- Click on the Start/Update button next to the Stocks, Mutual Funds, Bonds, Other category.
- Follow the prompts.