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" I have realized a short term net loss of $5,000 this year trading stocks."

Then you need to fill out schedule D. You will give the name of the stock, dates you bought and sold, amount you paid and amount you got when you sold.

" I do not intend to use the loss for tax purposes until tax year 2001. Do I need to file any forms with the IRS this year to inform them of this carry-over?"

You don't get to carry it all over. You claim $3000 against your regular income this year (assuming you have $3000 in income. The other $2000 will be carried forward to 2001. If you don't do schedule D this year, you will need to amend your return and do the schedule D later. Do it now. You don't have the choice as to which year to take the loss.

Best wishes, Chris
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