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Capital gain rates: Too good to be true?

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Q  Your article on capital gains says the capital gains rate is zero for 2008 if your joint income is in the 15% tax bracket or below. Our accountant disagrees. Is your article correct? J.C., Indiana

A  Yes. These preferential tax rates apply to your “net capital gain,” defined as the amount by which your net long-term capital gain for the year exceeds your net short-term capital loss. To qualify as a long-term capital gain, you must have held the asset for more than one year.

See IRS Publication 550, Investment Income and Expenses, at

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