Securities Transaction Tax – STT

STT i.e. Securities Transaction Tax is levied on the purchase and sale of securities listed on a recognized stock exchange in India. The STT Act has a list of securities on which STT is applicable. Such securities include equity, derivatives, and units of equity mutual fund. The STT rate is prescribed by the Government. STT should be paid by buyer or seller.

  • The recognized stock exchange collects STT from the buyer or seller
  • The recognized stock exchange deposits STT with the government on or before 7th of the next month
  • Buyer or Seller can claim STT as a business expense against trading income

If the recognized stock exchange is unable to collect STT from the trader, it is still liable to deposit STT with the government to avoid interest and penalty.

Securities on which STT is levied

Securities Transaction Tax is charged on the Securities that are traded on a recognized stock exchange in India. Following is the list of securities on which STT is levied.

Securities Transaction Tax Rates

Transaction STT Rate Who pays? Value
Purchase of equity share (delivery based) or unit of business trust 0.1% Buyer Purchase Value
Sale of equity share (delivery based) or unit of business trust 0.1% Seller Sale Value
Purchase of equity mutual fund (delivery based) NIL Buyer Not Applicable
Sale of equity mutual fund (delivery based) 0.001% Seller Sale Value
Sale of equity share (intraday) and equity mutual fund (without actual delivery) 0.025% Seller Sale Value
Sale of Exchange Traded Funds (ETFs) 0.001% Seller Sale Value
Sale of Futures 0.01% Seller Sale Value
Sale of Options (option not exercised) 0.017% Seller Option Premium
Sale of Options (option is exercised) 0.125% Buyer Settlement Price
Sale of unlisted equity shares under an IPO which are later listed on a recognized stock exchange 0.2% Seller Sale Value

Income Tax on Securities with STT paid

The income tax rate for securities on which STT is paid is lower than the income tax rate for other assets. Here are the Income Tax rates for securities on which STT is paid.

Type of Security Period of Holding LTCG STCG
Equity Shares / Equity MF / ETF / ESOP / RSU 12 months 10% in excess of INR 1 lac 15%
Foreign Shares 24 months 10% without indexation slab rate

In the case of Equity Shares and Equity MF, the investor should calculate the cost of acquisition after applying the grandfathering rule. Read about how to calculate income tax on LTCG on sale of equity shares and equity mutual funds.

A trader having income from trading in securities and report such income as Business Income can claim STT as a valid business expense. STT paid on trading transactions is a direct expense related to trading income. The trader can report it as an expense in the P&L Account while filing ITR-3 on the Income Tax Website.

FAQs

How is STT charged on Intraday Trading?

STT is charged on the sell value of the transaction at 0.025%. Here is an example:
Trader buys 100 shares of HDFC at Rs.1000 each at 11:30 AM on Monday & sells them off at Rs.1006 at 2:00 PM. STT will be Rs.25.13 calculated as Rs.1006*100*0.025% = Rs.25.15

How is STT charged on F&O Trading?

STT is charged on the sell value of the transaction at 0.01%. Here is an example:
A trader sells 1 lot of NIFTY on at 9000. His total volume comes to Rs.9000*75 = Rs.6,75,000. STT on this trade will be calculated as Rs.6,75,000*0.01% = Rs.67.5

How is STT different from CTT?

STT is Securities Transaction Tax and CTT is Commodity Transaction Tax. STT is levied on trading in securities such as equity delivery, equity intraday, equity F&O, ETFs, Mutual Funds etc. CTT is levied on trading in non-agri commodity derivatives.

Long Term Capital Gain Tax on Shares – Equity Shares & Equity Mutual Funds

Up to FY 2018-19, Long Term Capital Gain (LTCG) on the sale of shares and securities on which Securities Transaction Tax (STT) is paid was exempt under Sec 10(38) of the Income Tax Act. However, under Budget 2018, the exemption under Sec 10(38) was removed. Further, a new Section 112A was introduced to levy 10% income tax on Long Term Capital Gains on the sale of equity shares, equity mutual funds and units of business trust in excess of Rs. 1 lac for a financial year. Sec 112A was applicable from FY 2018-19 (AY 2019-20) onwards.

What is Long Term Capital Gain?

The profit or loss on the sale of a capital asset held for more than the specified holding period is a Long Term Capital Gain (LTCG) or Long Term Capital Loss (LTCL).

Based on the period of holding, here is a summary of Capital Gain on the sale of Capital Assets. Eg: If the listed equity share of a domestic company is sold after 12 months of purchase, the profit or loss is Long Term Capital Gain or Long Term Capital Loss.

Capital Asset Period of Holding
Equity Shares of Domestic Company listed on a recognized stock exchange 12 months
Equity Shares of Domestic Company not listed on a recognized stock exchange 24 months
Equity Shares of Foreign Company whether listed or not 24 months
Equity-oriented Mutual Funds or ETFs (Exchange Traded Funds) 12 months
Debt-oriented Mutual Funds or ETFs (Exchange Traded Funds) 36 months
Debentures or Bonds listed on a recognized stock exchange 12 months
Debentures or Bonds not listed on a recognized stock exchange 36 months
Immovable Property such as land, building or house property 24 months
Movable Property such as jewelry, car, painting, work of art 36 months
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Grandfathering Rule

Traders who would have invested into equity markets with a view to earning tax-free income in the form of Long Term Capital Gains would now have to pay tax as per the new rule. The announcement of 10% LTCG was made on 1st February 2018. Thus, an investor who was holding an investment in equity shares and equity mutual funds as on 31/01/2018, should not be required to pay tax on entire capital gains. Hence, to ensure that LTCG earned up to 31st January 2018 should not be taxed, the Capital Gains earned up to 31/01/2018 would be grandfathered using a formula.

For equity shares and equity mutual funds bought on or before 31/01/2018, the cost of acquisition should be calculated as follows:

  1. Lower of Fair Market Value as on 31/01/2018 or the Actual Selling Price
  2. Step 1 or Actual Cost Price whichever is higher

Section 112A – Calculation of Long Term Capital Gain Tax on Shares

The budget was announced on 01/02/2018 and so the provisions for tax on LTCG are different based on the date of purchase.

Particulars

Up to 31/01/18 01/02/18 Onwards
Date of Purchase Shares bought on or before 31/01/2018 Shares bought on or after 01/02/2018
STCG (sold within 365 days) STCG @ 15% STCG @ 15%
LTCG (sold after 365 days) SP = price at which shares are sold SP = price at which shares are sold
CP = Follow these steps:

Higher of the following:

(i) Price as on 31.01.18 or Actual Selling Price whichever is less

(ii) Actual Cost
CP = price at which shares are bought
LTCG = SP – CP LTCG = SP – CP
Tax = 10% (LTCG – Rs.1,00,000) Tax = 10% (LTCG – Rs.1,00,000)

Examples for Grandfathering Rule

  Case I Case II
Purchase Date  1st Jan 2018 10th Feb 2018
Purchase Value 2,00,000 2,00,000
Sell Date  10th Jan 2020 10th Jan 2020
Sale Value 3,50,000 3,50,000
Grandfathering rule applicable Yes No
Actual Cost * 2,40,000 ** 2,00,000
LTCG
= Sale Value – Actual Cost
1,10,000 1,50,000
Exempt Exempt up to INR 1 Lakh Exempt up to INR 1 Lakh
Tax Liability 1,10,000 – 1,00,000= 10,000 * 10%
= 1,000
1,50,000 – 1,00,000= 50,000 * 10%
= 5,000

*Note: Actual Cost is the Cost of Acquisition to calculate capital gains 

**Calculation of Actual Cost using FMV (Case I)

  Condition Amount (INR) Qualifying Amount
Step 1 Lower of:

Actual Selling Price
or
FMV on 31st Jan 2018
Lower of:

3,50,000 or 2,40,000  

2,40,000
Step 2 Higher of:

Value in Step 1
or
Purchase Value
Higher of:

2,40,000 or 2,00,000

2,40,000
  Actual Cost   2,40,000

Income Tax on Long Term Capital Gain

The tax rate of a capital asset is determined on the basis of the nature of capital gain i.e. LTCG or STCG.

Capital Asset STT LTCG STCG
Listed equity share of a domestic company Yes 10% in excess of INR 1 lac u/s 112A 15% u/s 111A
Listed equity share of a domestic company No 10% without indexation slab rate
Unlisted equity share of a domestic company No 20% with indexation slab rate
Listed equity share of a foreign company Yes / No 10% without indexation slab rate
Unlisted equity share of a foreign company Yes / No 20% with indexation slab rate
Equity Mutual Fund or ETF Yes 10% in excess of INR 1 lac u/s 112A 15% u/s 111A
Debt Mutual Fund or ETF No 20% with indexation slab rate
Listed Debentures or Bonds No 10% without indexation slab rate
Unlisted Debentures or Bonds No 20% without indexation slab rate
Land, Building, House Property, Car, Jewellery, Paintings, Art of Work NA 20% with indexation slab rate

Long Term Capital Gain Tax on Shares – Equity Shares and Equity Mutual Funds

Date of Purchase Date of Sale Tax Treatment
On or before 31/01/2018 On or before 31/01/2018 Exempt u/s 10(38)
On or before 31/01/2018 Between 31/01/2018 and 01/04/2018 Exempt u/s 10(38)
On or before 31/01/2018 01/04/2018 onwards Calculate LTCG as per the above table
* LTCG up to 31/01/2018 exempt
* LTCG after 31/01/2018 – Tax at 10% in excess of Rs. 1 lac
On or after 31/01/2018 01/04/2018 onwards Calculate LTCG as per the above table
Tax at 10% in excess of Rs. 1 lac
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Exemption from LTCG

The taxpayer having income from the sale of a long term capital asset can claim an exemption under Section 54 to 54GB of the Income Tax Act if he/she fulfills the conditions.

A taxpayer can claim the exemption by reinvesting the proceeds from the sale into a specified capital asset. Such exemption would lower the capital gains and save taxes on the same. However, the taxpayer must hold the new asset for the specified period as per the relevant section. However, if he/she sells the asset before the specified time period, he/she must report it as an income in the relevant financial year and pay tax at the applicable rate.

The taxpayer has an option to open an account under the Capital Gains Account Scheme and park the sale proceeds in it till the time they invest in the specified asset to claim the Capital Gains exemption.

FAQs

Is LTCG taxable now?

Yes. Under Budget 2018, the exemption under Sec 10(38) was removed. Further, a new Section 112A was introduced to levy 10% income tax on Long Term Capital Gains on the sale of equity shares, equity mutual funds and units of business trust in excess of Rs. 1 lac for a financial year. Sec 112A was applicable to FY 2018-19 (AY 2019-20) onwards.

What rate is LTCG taxable at?

LTCG is taxable at a flat 10% on income that is exceeding Rs. 1lk. Therefore, it is exempt up to Rs. 1lk.

Is STCG exempt?

No. Hence, STCG is taxable at a flat rate of 15% without any exemption.