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Navigating F&O markets by learning turnover calculation & taxation tips

Assessing the turnover and tax on futures and options is essential in determining profits. Know how they are calculated.

how to calculate f&o turnover

Futures and options are essentially financial tools that traders use to speculate the price movements of share prices and various other assets. These assets can include shares, foreign exchange and commodities. Calculating turnover in futures and options trading is vital for individual traders and financial institutions to evaluate their trading activity, monitor risk exposure, and comply with regulatory requirements. 

How is futures and options turnover calculation done?

Before delving into turnover calculations, let us briefly define futures and options:

Futures contracts:

Futures contracts are regulated agreements(take place in the market) to buy or sell an underlying asset at a specified price on the expiry of the future date.

They provide participants with the obligation to fulfil the contract, whether it results in a profit or a loss.

Options contracts:

Let us explore 2 major types of options contracts and their features:

Call option:

A call option grants the buyer the privilege without any compulsion to buy the underlying asset at the strike price on the expiry date. 

Put option:

They grant the buyer the privilege to sell the underlying asset at the strike price on expiry. The holder has no compulsion to fulfil the contract. Put options are often used for risk management, portfolio protection, or a way to speculate on declining asset prices.

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What is futures and options turnover?

Tax authorities classify futures and options (F&O) trading as a business activity, which means that any income generated from F&O transactions is business income. Consequently, any gains or profits made in the derivatives market are subject to business taxation regulations. F&O turnover encompasses the overall income derived from trading activities, taking into account profits and losses. 

How to calculate F&O turnover?

In F&O trading, the turnover calculation of options and futures is based on the absolute profit. It accounts for positive and negative differences arising from several transactions over a year. To calculate futures turnover, you can use the simple formula:

Futures turnover = absolute profit

The formula for options turnover calculation is as follows:

Options turnover = absolute profit + premium received from selling options

These considerations and formulas are essential for accurately assessing and reporting your F&O turnover for tax purposes.

Example of F&O turnover calculation 

Let us understand the F&O calculation by looking at the following example, wherein a person made the following transactions:

CompanyFuture/ optionsSize of the lotBuy valueValue of salesGain/LossTurnover
A LtdFutures300200190-3,0003000
B LtdFutures2003103508,0008000
C LtdOptions6001802001200012200
D LtdOptions400250240-4,0004240

For A Ltd and B Ltd where the transaction is done in the futures, the turnover is in absolute terms. It is the absolute profit. Whereas, for C Ltd and D Ltd, the transaction is done in options and the turnover is calculated by adding the sales value and the absolute gain/loss.

Now you can compute the total expenses to arrive at the final sales value. These expenses include electricity, internet and wifi charges, commissions paid to brokers, rent payments, etc. Let us assume the total expenses incurred is Rs. 7440, so the annual turnover from F&O would be Rs.20000.

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Futures and options taxation

If you are engaged in futures and options (F&O) trading, income tax rules apply depending on the turnover and your chosen taxation scheme. 

  • Trading turnover below Rs 2 Cr

Tax audit required if F&O gains/losses are less than 6% of trading turnover and not under the presumptive taxation scheme, with total income exceeding the exemption limit. 

  • Trading turnover is in-between Rs 2 Cr and Rs 10 Cr

Tax audit is not needed if over 95% of transactions are digital, regardless of profit or loss.

  • Trading turnover over INR 10 Cr

Tax audit is mandatory.

Now, what happens when there’s a net loss from F&O trading? F&O trading losses are considered non-speculative business losses. These losses can be adjusted against income from other businesses (excluding speculative income), rental income, or income from other sources. Unaccounted business losses can be carried ahead for eight years. These losses can be set off with business income. 

Also read: Futures vs. Options: Differences every investor must know!


In conclusion, if you are involved in F&O trading, it is essential to adhere to these F&O tax calculations to ensure compliance with the law.

With the rise in the number of people who hold demat accounts, trading in futures and options has become rampant. Due to this, there is tighter regulation around F & O trading. 

Calculating the turnover is necessary to comply with tax rules. It is important to note that the calculation for turnover is different for options (absolute profit + premium received from selling options) and futures (absolute profit). Whenever trading exotic options in the market, you must be aware of the tax consequences and how calculations are undertaken.

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