ACB Calculator

Sigil’s ACB Calculator is a web-based service designed for income trusts. Unitholders of income trusts can be faced with very complex tax calculations, which leads to heavy demands placed upon Investor Relations departments. To mitigate this, the ACB Calculator is a tool an income trust can make available on its public web site which allows Unitholders to easily calculate information required for tax purposes.


To use the ACB Calculator, Unitholders simply enter their unit purchase and sale history on a page on the trust’s public web site. When this is complete, the Unitholder’s current Adjusted Cost Base (ACB) and other tax information is displayed. Related web pages, such as distribution history and details on the most recent distribution, are also powered by this solution.

The income trust is provided with access to a secure management back-end which allows Investor Relations to view end edit distribution data, monitor usage, and control the behaviour of the service. Changes made to distribution data are reflected immediately on the web site. Mergers, acquisitions, splits, and consolidations of trust units, as well as trusts that operate simultaneously in both Canadian and American markets, are all fully supported.

The ACB Calculator was developed by Sigil IT and marketed by Merlin Edge Inc., a Calgary-based marketing and communications agency. Current or former clients include:

  • Canadian Oil Sands Trust
  • PrimeWest Energy Trust
  • Penn West Energy Trust
  • Provident Energy Trust
  • Big Rock Brewery Income Trust
  • Daylight Resources Trust

In 2006, the Canadian federal government changed the taxation structure of income trusts. Due to these changes, the need for the ACB Calculator suite of tools was reduced. This software is still used on several income trusts’ web sites, but is not being actively marketed. For more information on the ACB Calculator suite, including screenshots of the calculator in use and the administrative back-end, please refer to the promotional brochure (PDF file) produced by Merlin Edge.

Technical Details

The ACB Calculator solution was built using ASP.NET and can either store data in SQL Server or XML-based data. It is designed to operate as a hosted service, which means it can be easily incorporated into any existing web site, regardless of the technology used to create and host the site. Custom implementations linking distribution data with X-Web, third party content management systems, external web services and quote providers, and other information systems were also developed.

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