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Level 2

Trading business

I trade options with 30-150 days till expiration and sometimes keep till it expires worthless. Am I eligible to have an S corp Trading business? Also, what is the reasonable salary i need to give myself. Will such business make me eligible for QBI deduction (Based off of current household income, I am not eligible for QBI, but if things change, I would like to know). Thank you!

2 Replies
Employee Tax Expert

Trading business

Hi @MB1991 

If a trader meets all IRS trading benchmarks the tax laws require , the trader can choose to remain an independent qualified trader or incorporate as a business entity. While fiscal and filing options are similar for the two, trading as a business can offer additional, considerable tax advantages.

Here is an article from the IRS on trader status.

You may consider speaking with an advisor to see what your options are. 


The following qualifies you for QBI:

QBI is the net amount of qualified items of income, gain, deduction and loss from any qualified trade or business, including income from partnerships, S corporations, sole proprietorships, and certain trusts.  


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Employee Tax & Finance Expert

Trading business

Hello MB1991!,


Yes, you can create an S-Corp and use it for trading. There is a NAICS code 523110 for this very purpose. I know that many online brokers allow you to create trading accounts for corporations. You may be required to call or download the application rather than just apply online as an individual would. The brokerage houses require corporate formation documents and minutes to authorize the opening of the account.


Read this article to make sure you understand the rules and elections surrounding trading. Also, read the article below to make sure you qualify for professional trader status. Make sure you understand the mark to market rules as well. Professional trader status


As far as a reasonable salary, that is a very subjective determination. I have read that 25% to 50% of an S-Corp's net income is often used as reasonable although I cannot assure you that the IRS will agree. Here is a link to the IRS.Gov explanation of reasonable compensation.


Here is the link to the Qualified Business Income Deduction so you can know the background information related to the QBI. Also, here is How Traders Can Get The 20% QBI Deduction Under New Law  I found that addresses this very issue.


Full disclosure, I have never prepared a professional trader's tax return.

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