Information on Taxes and Accounting from the IRS

Barter Exchanges

"Bartering is the trading of one product or service for another. Usually there is no exchange of cash. Barter may take place on an informal one-to-one basis between individuals and businesses, or it can take place on a third party basis through a barter exchange company. A barter exchange is any person or organization with members or clients that contract with each other (or with the barter exchange) to jointly trade or barter property or services. The term does not include arrangements that provide solely for the informal exchange of similar services on a noncommercial basis.

Unlike one-on-one bartering, members of exchanges are not obligated to barter or purchase directly from a seller. Instead, when a barter exchange member sells a product or service to another member, their barter account is credited for the fair market value of the sale. When a barter exchange member buys, the account is debited for the fair market value of the purchase."

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