If I sell most of the shares of a company I own, and then buy them back within the month is that a wash sale? Can I buy the shares back without a tax penalty?
In the US, a wash sale occurs if you execute a closing trade for a loss and within 30 days before or after realizing the loss, you buy (or sell) a “substantially identical” stock, security, or option contract.
If you sell your shares for a gain, you may be liable for taxes. If you sell them for a loss, you may be able to deduct the loss and reduce your taxes. If you violate the 60 day window after a loss, some or all of that loss might be deferred until the shares in the additional purchase are disposed of.