- The difference between an asset's basis (usually the cost) and sale price. In appropriate cases, a Certificate of Divestiture allows a financial disclosure filer to defer paying taxes on capital gain.
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When you sell an asset at a higher price than you paid for it, the difference is your capital gain. For example, if you buy 100 shares of stock for $20 a share and sell them for $30 a share, you realize a capital gain of $10 a share, or $1,000 in total.
If you own the stock for more than a year before selling it, you have a long-term capital gain. If you hold the stock for less than a year, you have a short-term capital gain.
Most long-term capital gains are taxed at a lower rate than your other income while short-term gains are taxed at your regular rate. There are some exceptions, such as gains on collectibles, which are taxed at 28%. The long-term capital tax rates are 15% for anyone whose marginal federal tax rate is 25% or higher, and 5% for anyone whose marginal rate is 10% or 15%.
You are exempt from paying capital gains tax on profits of up to $250,000 on the sale of your primary home if you're single and up to $500,000 if you're married and file a joint return, provided you meet the requirements for this exemption.
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- capital gain or loss, Capital gains tax (CGT), Capital loss, Long-term capital gain (or loss), Paper profit (or loss), Profit, Profit taking, Realized gain, Unrealized gain, Unrealized loss
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