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The Optimal Trading and Pricing of Securities with Asymmetric Capital Gains Taxes and Transaction Costs


  • Dammon, Robert M
  • Spatt, Chester S


This article explores the optimal trading and pricing of taxable securities with asymmetric capital gains taxes and transaction costs. In the long-term region, investors realize all gains below some critical cutoff level, which we derive analytically. In the short-term region, investors defer all gains and, depending upon the time remaining in the short-term region, may also defer small losses. Contrary to common intuition, deferral of short-term losses can be optimal even without transaction costs. The value of tax timing is considerably bigger under the optimal trading strategy than under alternative strategies previously analyzed. The impact of offset rules is also explored. Article published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Financial Studies in its journal, The Review of Financial Studies.

Suggested Citation

  • Dammon, Robert M & Spatt, Chester S, 1996. "The Optimal Trading and Pricing of Securities with Asymmetric Capital Gains Taxes and Transaction Costs," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 9(3), pages 921-952.
  • Handle: RePEc:oup:rfinst:v:9:y:1996:i:3:p:921-52

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    Cited by:

    1. Benninga, Simon & Sarig, Oded, 2003. "Risk, returns, and values in the presence of differential taxation," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 27(6), pages 1123-1138, June.
    2. Zoran Ivković & James Poterba & Scott Weisbenner, 2005. "Tax-Motivated Trading by Individual Investors," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 95(5), pages 1605-1630, December.
    3. Marco Realdon, 2013. "Participation exemption and tax arbitrage: Italy’s case," European Journal of Law and Economics, Springer, vol. 36(1), pages 77-93, August.
    4. Klein, Peter, 2004. "The capital gain lock-in effect and perfect substitutes," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 88(12), pages 2765-2783, December.
    5. Poterba, James M., 2002. "Taxation, risk-taking, and household portfolio behavior," Handbook of Public Economics,in: A. J. Auerbach & M. Feldstein (ed.), Handbook of Public Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 17, pages 1109-1171 Elsevier.
    6. Astrup Jensen, Bjarne & Marekwica, Marcel, 2011. "Optimal portfolio choice with wash sale constraints," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 35(11), pages 1916-1937.
    7. Fischer, Marcel & Gallmeyer, Michael F., 2016. "Heuristic portfolio trading rules with capital gain taxes," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 119(3), pages 611-625.
    8. Hanlon, Michelle & Heitzman, Shane, 2010. "A review of tax research," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 50(2-3), pages 127-178, December.
    9. Marekwica, Marcel, 2012. "Optimal tax-timing and asset allocation when tax rebates on capital losses are limited," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 36(7), pages 2048-2063.
    10. Myyrä, Sami, & Pietola, Kyosti & Heikkilä, Anna-Maija, 2011. "Farm Level Capital: Capital positions, structures, the dynamics of farm level investments, capital accumulation and leverage positions," Factor Markets Working Papers 105, Centre for European Policy Studies.
    11. Viard, Alan D., 2000. "Dynamic asset pricing effects and incidence of realization-based capital gains taxes," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 46(2), pages 465-488, October.
    12. Shoven, John B. & Sialm, Clemens, 2004. "Asset location in tax-deferred and conventional savings accounts," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 88(1-2), pages 23-38, January.
    13. Klein, Peter, 1999. "The capital gain lock-in effect and equilibrium returns," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 71(3), pages 355-378, March.
    14. Bergstresser, Daniel & Poterba, James, 2002. "Do after-tax returns affect mutual fund inflows?," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 63(3), pages 381-414, March.
    15. Lally, Martin, 2000. "Valuation of companies and projects under differential personal taxation," Pacific-Basin Finance Journal, Elsevier, vol. 8(1), pages 115-133, March.
    16. Kang, Johnny & Pekkala, Tapio & Polk, Christopher & Ribeiro, Ruy, 2011. "Stock prices under pressure: how tax and interest rates drive returns at the turn of the tax year," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 43096, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
    17. Dahlquist, Magnus & Robertsson, Göran & Rydqvist, Kristian, 2014. "Direct evidence of dividend tax clienteles," Journal of Empirical Finance, Elsevier, vol. 28(C), pages 1-12.
    18. Paul Harrison & Harold H. Zhang, "undated". "Cyclical Variation in the Risk and Return Relation," Computing in Economics and Finance 1997 175, Society for Computational Economics.
    19. Thornton Matheson, 2011. "Taxing Financial Transactions; Issues and Evidence," IMF Working Papers 11/54, International Monetary Fund.
    20. Klein, Peter, 2001. "The capital gain lock-in effect and long-horizon return reversal," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 59(1), pages 33-62, January.
    21. Hoon Cho & Brian Ciochetti & James Shilling, 2013. "Are Commercial Mortgage Defaults Affected by Tax Considerations?," The Journal of Real Estate Finance and Economics, Springer, vol. 46(1), pages 1-23, January.
    22. Klein, Peter, 1998. "The capital gain lock-in effect with short sales constraints," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 22(12), pages 1533-1558, December.

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