Keeping Good Investment Records

What records should you keep to help you report your investment income accurately and claim tax deductions?

What records to keep

Generally, for investments you will need to keep your records for 5 years after the ATO have processed your return.

You need to keep records relating to your investments showing:

  • how much you paid for them
  • what you received if you disposed of them
  • what income you received from them
  • the expenses you incurred in owning them and maintaining them.

Examples of records include:

  • your acquisition and disposal statements (your ‘buy’ and ‘sell’ contracts) – keep these records for 5 years from the date you dispose of your shares
  • bank statements and passbooks
  • dividend or managed investment distribution statements
  • purchase and sale details, including any contracts
  • expenditure records
  • details of capital losses made in previous years – you may be able to offset these losses against future capital gains.

You will receive most of the records you need to keep from:

  • the company that issued the shares
  • your stockbroker or online share trading provider
  • your financial institution if you took out a loan to buy the shares.

You should keep records if you prepare your own tax return or use a tax agent.

Asset registers

You can set up an asset register as an easy way to keep your records. Once you have entered your information into the register, you may be able to throw out records (after 5 years) you would otherwise have to keep for a long time.

If you have questions in relation to the above, or any other matters, please do not hesitate to contact our office on 1300 620 345.