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Discussion Starter #1
Hi.

I started investing in ETFs, MFs and stocks a couple months ago and use finance.google.ca to see my performance and only go to my direct brokerage to invest.

How do you prepare and keep track of the finished trades in regards of tax preparation?

I would like to enter all my transaction informations (purchase price, sell price and dates) and end of year have all numbers thru an export.

What do you use to keep track?

CU,
Alex
 

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All I do to keep track is maintain a spreadsheet. I record the security name, transaction type, volume, date and any comments. I have a separate sheet to calculate my average cost base for each of my positions as well.

I also keep my trade slips from Questrade for backup in case I miss anything.
 

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Trying to integrate tax information into portfolio tracking really complicates things. Most Canadians have a good chunk inside RRSPs and TFSAs which incur no tax. Also the ACB calculation can only be done manually for various reasons.

Then consider whether you WANT to track the current price of holdings against their cost. That only ensures you make wrong sell decisions. You will become THAT GUY that reacts in the way that a lot of technical trading rules reflect. I actively remove that information from my sight so I don't get sucked in.

The schedule necessary for inclusion in your tax return should look like what shows on the schedule provided in your tax package. It is incredibly simply to simply subtract one column from another, and then total the column at the bottom. If you don't know how to create spreadsheets, NOW IS THE TIME TO LEARN. A perfect project - teaching you a skill everyone should know.

Consider the forms/spreadsheets for tracking your portfolio referenced here.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Andrew and Leslie,

thank you very much for your insight. As I am extremely new in investing in stocks etc, I just wanted to figure out if I am on the right track with my spreadsheets or totally wrong because everybody might use XYZ Software which will do the job and I "reinvented the wheel" for my purpose.

Working with excel is nothing new (as I use it massively because of my other investments), which helps in this new environment.

Great link, Leslie, thank you.
 

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I bought Quicken this year in hopes that it will tell me everything I needed to know at tax time. I update it every month with all interest and dividends, and record purchase/sells at the time of the transaction.

Will wait til tax time to see if it helps.

I also keep a transaction log in Google Spreadsheet should Quicken bung it all up for me.
 

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Globe and Mail portfolio tracking

I use the Globe and Mail portfolio tracking. I like it better than my previous spreadsheets because it includes automatically the distributions.

The disadvantage is that my data is stored externally and I have no control. As a protection, I download the list of my transaction to a spreadsheet every year.

I use the free package. They do have some paid options that I did not investigate.

They do not track bonds except for a manual 'Other' grouping.
 

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I gave-up on the Financial Post portfolio tracker

I have tried using the Financial Post portfolio tracker. It had some features that the Globe and Mail lacked. I gave-up after a while because their web site was much too slow.
 

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I use Quicktax stock trade tracker. Its not the most intuitive software but I manage to get it all the work. The worst part is that it doesn't update information from the internet so you can't get real time performance and it also doesn't grab exchange rates from the net so I have to look up the exchange rate for the day of every trade. . Once you get up and running regular maintenance is easy. Overall this is the best thing I've found to track capital gains for Canadian tax purposes
 

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You need to ask yourself whether you are looking for software to
* keep track of data necessary for your tax return
* keep track of current portfolio only
* keep track of current and past portfolio and income earned YTD from each security and transactions for tax returns. The only publicly available sytem I know of.
 
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