Get Answers

Return to income

Capital-Gain Distributions

If you buy stock in a company and sell it later for a higher price, the money you make is called a capital gain. If you sell the stock after holding it for more than one year, it's considered a long-term capital gain.

The same is true for mutual funds you invest in. Fund managers buy and sell stocks hoping to make a profit. If the fund holds a stock for more than one year and then sells it, the profit you make as an investor is usually paid out. The profit paid out is a capital gain distribution. This also applies to pay outs made by crediting your cash account.

For tax purposes, Form 1099-DIV, Box 2a reports your capital-gain distributions. You could also receive this on a similar statement from the mutual fund company. These distributions are taxed at a lower rate than ordinary income. They're treated as long-term gains, regardless of how long you actually owned shares in the mutual fund.

Ready to file?

You've got your forms. And we've got your back. There's only one thing left to do. Let's do this.


So how much will you get (or owe) this year? That’s the million-dollar question. We happen to have three very useful calculators to help you estimate your refund or balance due.

Need Live Support? 1-800-HRBLOCK (1-800-472-5625) or Find An Office