E-Filing Pace Quickens Toward Finish

Data chart
YTD April 5, 2019. IRS.

Average refund remains down.

By Beth Bellor

As tax season entered its final days, a few positives brightened the data that generally have been bleak all year.

MORE: Why Shouldn’t All Tax Practitioners Need Licenses? | Data Divers Profile Taxpayer Filing Styles | 2 Ways the EITC Error Rate Is High | Tax Pro E-Filing Off 2.7% from Last Year’s Pace | Tax Season 2019 Serves Up a Taste of the Future | The Big Free-File Flop | The Demise of Schedule A? | Survey: Busy Season Goes Sour | Lessons Learned: How the Federal Shutdown Hit Busy Season 2019
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As of April 5, the latest figures available, the Internal Revenue Service had received 103.5 million individual income tax returns, down 0.3 percent from the same period last year. It had processed 100.6 million of them, down 0.5 percent from 2018, for a 97.2 percent processing rate.

E-filing receipts

E-filings were a positive, with the 96.8 million totaling reflecting a 1 percent increase. Tax professionals filed 53.8 million of those returns, down 0.8 percent, and DIYers filed 43 million, up 3.3 percent.

Tax pros had 55.6 percent of the market share in e-filing.

Website visits

Visits to IRS.gov numbered 376.7 million, up 10.1 percent.

Refunds

Total refunds numbered 77.9 million, down 1.5 percent, in an amount totaling $220.8 billion, down 2.6 percent. The average refund of $2,833 was down 1.1 percent.

Direct deposit refunds numbered 69.1 million, up 1.3 percent, and totaled $204.6 billion, down 0.5 percent. The average direct deposit refund of $2,961 was down 1.7 percent.

Direct deposit made up 88.7 percent of all refunds.

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