‘Must I report my capital gains and losses on shares in a tax return?

Sep 06, 2019
Whether you file electronically or the old-fashioned way, keeping record of capital gains and losses is important. Source: Getty.

Q: I own only a few shares, it has been more or less a little hobby for me. Over the years I have sold some (mainly at a loss), and my question is, as I am a retiree with most of my income coming from superannuation and thus don’t submit a tax return, do I need to do anything about the capital gain or loss from shares I sold?

I just assumed that because I don’t submit a tax return that I wouldn’t have to do anything and I’ve just filed away the paperwork from the share sales.

A: Where you have no requirement to submit a tax return there is no requirement to report capital losses in a tax return. It is important to keep records of any capital losses as they can be used to offset capital gains and can be carried forward indefinitely.

In relation to capital gains, you only need to report these gains (reduced by any previous losses) in a tax return where the amount of gains is such that you go above the minimum income level for retiree. As it is more or less a hobby and the likely gains and losses are probably relatively small, there seems to be no need for you to lodge a return.

If you have a question for Starts at 60’s money experts, email it to [email protected].

Important information: The information provided on this website is of a general nature and for information purposes only. It does not take into account your objectives, financial situation or needs. It is not financial product advice and must not be relied upon as such. Before making any financial decision you should determine whether the information is appropriate in terms of your particular circumstances and seek advice from an independent licensed financial services professional.

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