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Income Tax on Gold

by | Apr 30, 2024 | Income Tax | 0 comments

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Important Keyword: ETF, Gift Income, SGB, Tax on Gold.

Income Tax on Gold (ETFs)

Gold investment has emerged as a favored choice among investors due to its historical track record of steady price appreciation, offering consistent returns over the long term. Moreover, investors often opt to include gold in their investment portfolios to diversify their holdings. However, with the proliferation of investment options in recent times, investors now have a plethora of choices, including jewelry, gold coins, gold ETFs, Sovereign Gold Bonds (SGBs), digital gold, and gold derivatives. It’s essential to recognize that each form of gold investment is subject to unique tax treatments.

When it comes to investing in gold, there are various avenues available, each with its own tax implications. Let’s explore the tax treatment for different forms of gold investments in India:

Taxation on Physical Gold:

Investing in physical gold, such as jewelry, bars, coins, or biscuits, is a common practice during special occasions like weddings or birthdays. Here’s how the tax works:

Income Category: The income generated from selling physical gold falls under the category of Capital Gains. If the gold is held for over 3 years before selling, it qualifies as Long Term Capital Gain (LTCG). If held for less than 3 years, it’s considered Short Term Capital Gain (STCG).

Tax Rate: For STCG, tax is levied at slab rates, while for LTCG, it’s at 20% with indexation benefits.

Taxation on Paper Gold:

Paper gold includes Gold ETFs, Gold Mutual Funds, and Sovereign Gold Bonds (SGBs). Here’s the tax treatment for each:

Income Category: Income from selling gold mutual funds or ETFs is categorized as Capital Gains. If held for over 3 years, it’s LTCG; if less than 3 years, it’s STCG. Tax Rate: STCG is taxed at slab rates, and LTCG is taxed at 20% with indexation benefits.

For Sovereign Gold Bonds: Interest earned on SGBs is taxed as Other Income (IFOS) at slab rates. Sale of SGB after 8 years is tax-exempt. Sale between 5 to 8 years is considered LTCG, taxed at 20% with indexation. Sale after 12 months but before 5 years is LTCG taxed at 10% without indexation. Sale within 12 months is STCG taxed at slab rates.

Taxation on Digital Gold:

Digital gold, facilitated through mobile wallets like Google Pay and Paytm, offers convenience. Here’s the tax scenario:

Income Category: Selling digital gold incurs Capital Gains tax. Holding for over 3 years results in LTCG, while under 3 years is STCG. Tax Rate: STCG is taxed at slab rates, and LTCG is taxed at 20% with indexation benefits.

Navigating the tax implications of gold investments is crucial for investors seeking to optimize their financial strategies. Let’s explore the tax treatment for various scenarios related to gold transactions:

Taxation on Gold Derivatives:

Gold derivatives, traded in the commodities market, are treated similarly to commodity Futures & Options (F&O) trading:

Income Category: Profits from selling gold derivatives are classified as Non-Speculative Business Income. Tax Rate: Taxable at slab rates, with expenses deductible against the income.

Taxation on Gift or Inheritance of Gold:

Gifts or inheritances of gold have specific tax considerations:

For Recipients: Gold received as a gift or inheritance from relatives is tax-exempt, while amounts exceeding INR 50,000 from non-relatives are taxable under Other Income at slab rates. However, gifts received during marriage ceremonies are tax-exempt. Sale of gifted gold incurs capital gains tax. For Senders: No tax obligations for those gifting gold to relatives or others.

Tax Rules on Gold for NRIs:

Non-Resident Indians (NRIs) can invest in various forms of gold except Sovereign Gold Bonds (SGBs). Taxation rules on gold sales for NRIs mirror those for residents, with TDS applicable on redemption of Gold ETFs or Mutual Funds.

Reporting and Loss Treatment:

ITR Filing: Use ITR-2 for reporting capital gains from physical, digital, or paper gold, and ITR-3 for non-speculative business income from gold derivatives. Loss Treatment: Short-term and long-term capital losses can offset corresponding gains, with any remaining losses carried forward for up to 8 years.

Tax Saving Strategies for LTCG:

Taxpayers with long-term capital gains from gold sales can explore exemptions under Section 54EE (investing in specified funds for startups) and Section 54F (investing in residential properties), subject to specified conditions.

Understanding these tax nuances empowers investors to make informed decisions and optimize their gold investment strategies while minimizing tax liabilities.

Read More: Fund of Funds (FOF): Meaning, Types and Taxation

Web Stories: Fund of Funds (FOF): Meaning, Types and Taxation

Official Income Tax Return filing website: https://incometaxindia.gov.in/


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