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For do it yourself investors, at least.

IRS Pub 17, Chapter 30:
You can deduct fees you pay to a broker, bank, trustee, or similar agent to collect your taxable bond interest or dividends on shares of stock. But you cannot deduct a fee you pay to a broker to buy investment property, such as stocks or bonds. You must add the fee to the cost of the property. You cannot deduct the fee you pay to a broker to sell securities. You can use the fee only to figure gain or loss from the sale.

The first one makes it sound like TMF subscriptions may be tax deductible, after all they are fees I pay to tell me which investments to make, so that I can collect (interest or) dividends on shares of stock. Even a few Hidden Gems pay interest. It does make sense, cause if you used a mutual fund, then your expense ratio would be taken directly out of your dividends, thereby reducing the taxable income.

Also, I cannot find any catch that the fees must be less than the amount of dividends or interest collected by said investments. So even if my dividends collected from a subscription service are low, I should still be able to deduct the full cost so long as the dividends and interest are non-zero.


You can deduct depreciation on your home computer if you use it to produce income (for example, to manage your investments that produce taxable income). You generally must depreciate the computer using the straight line method over the Alternative Depreciation System (ADS) recovery period. But if you work as an employee and also use the computer in that work, see Publication 946.

The second one, however, is even harder to believe. Depreciate the cost of your home computer so long as you manage investments on it? I've read some of Pub 946, and I do get the idea that the math may not be simple, and that you formally have to keep logs or proof of your use to produce business or investment income. However, I do see that you can keep a log for only a portion of the year so long as other records back up that it's representative of the whole year. Doesn't seem out of the realm of possiblity that you could keep, say, a week's worth of logs when you did some stock research, and use TMF post history and stock transaction logs to prove you did it year long... IF you ever got audited, of course. Seems to me the effort would be well worth it for a sizeable tax deduction.

Surprisingly I see nothing about it being prorated for the percentage of time you use for each activity, athough I could be wrong, I haven't read the whole thing.

Does anyone who knows more about these two clauses care to comment?
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