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Stock Traders trade in shares, securities, commodities, and currency through online trading platforms. Income from trading in Equity Intraday, Equity F&O, Commodity Trading, and Currency Trading is considered as a Business Income. Thus, it is important to determine if the Tax Audit as per the provisions of the Income Tax Act is applicable to Trading Income.
Under Budget 2020, the limit for turnover as per Section 44AB is increased from INR 1 Cr to INR 5 Cr if at least 95% of the total payments and at least 95% of the total receipts are digital in nature.
In the case of Traders, the limit for Tax Audit applicability u/s 44AB would be INR 5 Cr since all transactions are digital. For the taxpayers who do not satisfy the above conditions, the limit under Sec 44AB of INR 1 Cr remains unchanged.
Let us understand the conditions for Tax Audit in the case of Stock Traders who have all their trading transactions online. The presumptive rate is 6% since the transactions are digital. The increased limit of INR 5 Cr is applicable FY 2019-20 onwards. If the tax audit is applicable the trader should appoint a CA to prepare and file a tax audit report.
Trading Turnover up to Rs. 1 Cr
Trading Turnover more than Rs. 1 Cr and up to Rs. 2 Cr
Trading Turnover more than Rs. 2 Cr
Trading Turnover up to Rs. 2 Cr
Trading Turnover more than Rs. 2 Cr and up to Rs. 5 Cr
Under Budget 2020, the turnover limit under Sec 44AB has been increased from Rs. 1 Cr to Rs. 5 Cr. However, the turnover limit under Sec 44AD has not been changed. When the Trading Turnover is between Rs. 2 Cr and Rs. 5 Cr, neither Sec 44AB is applicable nor Sec 44AD. Thus, Tax Audit is not applicable irrespective of profit or loss. The Income Tax Department is expected to make an amendment in the turnover limit of Sec 44AD to resolve this loophole.
Trading Turnover more than Rs. 5 Cr
After the Budget 2020 speech, there was a confusion regarding the tax audit limit. Whether the limit of Rs. 5 Cr was increased for MSME only?
No. The limit of Rs. 5 Cr is not restricted to MSME only. As per the Finance Bill, the increased limit in Sec 44AB is applicable to any person who earns Business Income.
Tax Audit applicability as per Income Tax Act is:
1. If the Trading Turnover in a financial year is up to INR 2 Crore and net profit is less than 6% of the trading turnover
2. If the Trading Turnover exceeds INR 2 Crore irrespective of profit or loss
The limit of turnover to determine tax audit has been increased to Rs. 5 Cr under Budget 2020. The new limit is applicable to AY 2020-21. Therefore in the case of loss from Intraday Trading, Tax Audit is applicable.
Trading Turnover should be calculated to determine the Tax Audit applicability as per the Income Tax Act. Absolute Turnover is the sum of the absolute value of profit and loss of each trade during the financial year.
1. Trading Turnover for Intraday Trading = Absolute Turnover
2. Trading Turnover for F&O Trading
Futures = Absolute Turnover
Options = Absolute Turnover + Premium on Sale of Options