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Bitcoin and Tax: The Taxation of Cryptocurrencies


Even if Bitcoin is called a cryptocurrency, it is not an actual currency from a tax perspective. This means that no flat tax has to be paid for the purchase and sale.

Cryptocurrency – How Is It Taxed?

But that does not necessarily mean that the tax office is not interested in the profit that could be booked with the digital currency. If you work with digital currencies, you should very well deal with taxation.

From the legislator’s point of view, cryptocurrencies, such as bitcoin, are not legal tender. This means that from a tax law perspective, digital currencies cannot be compared to income that comes from investments, shares, or other financial transactions.

Yields that result from crypto trading are comparable to the profits that can be made from works of art or from other valuables. Ultimately, this may be an advantage if you want to sell the coins profitably. Because sometimes the profit achieved does not have to be taxed at all.

What investors need to pay special attention to

When it comes to taxation, two values ​​are used: the profit or return that could be generated by selling the bitcoins and the period in which the coins of the digital currency are privately owned.

Anyone who has owned the bitcoins for more than a year no longer has to deal with the question of possible tax liability. In this case, no matter how high it is, the profit remains tax-free. This means that the profit generated from the sale does not even have to be stated in a tax return.

The capital gain results from the difference between the purchase and sale price. Any losses can even be deducted from the profit. If Bitcoin yields interest, the flat-rate tax is payable – the holding period is then extended to ten years.

However, if you sell the coins within a year, the profit remains tax-free up to 600 euros. However, this is an exemption limit that applies to all sales transactions. The difference to the allowance? If you exceed the exemption limit by 10 euros, the total amount, which would be 610 euros in this example, is taxable. A tax-free amount would only have to be taxed on the amount that exceeded the limit – that would be just 10 euros.

Transactions should be documented very precisely

If you buy and sell coins of the cryptocurrency, again and again, it will become confusing over time, when and how many coins were bought and sold at what price. Above all, it is often not as clear here as it is with the one-year holding period.

So that there are no difficulties with the tax office, it is important to document the purchase and sale of the coins very precisely so that the so-called “first in, first out” method can be used. That means those bitcoins that were purchased first are also sold first.

The following example should give you an idea: If 2 coins were bought on April 5, 10 coins on May 8, and 3 coins on December 1, the one-year hold period for two coins ends on April 6 of the following year.

Anyone who sells 7 coins in September can look forward to a tax-free profit. However, if the entire portfolio is sold, taxes must be paid on the profits made on the coins acquired on December 1st.

It is about investing your money profitably, you have to decide against well-known financial products. This means that savings books such as daily or fixed-term deposit accounts or capital life insurance policies are absolutely no longer usable. Today it is advisable to look at stock markets like funds. Or you work with cryptocurrencies – provided that you describe yourself as risk-averse.

It is important that you only take money in your hand that may be lost. Don’t take out a loan (LooseLending) for the sole purpose of investing in crypto trading because the volatility is extremely high – losses are therefore always possible if you pump your money into the crypto market.

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