After searching the internet,I found no answer. For example, in USA, I purchased 100 shares of Apple stock two years ago and then purchased another 100 shares last month, will my holding period start over again from last month? If I sold 100 shares today, will it consider long term gain or short term gain? What if sold all of them? Thank you.


1 Answer 1


You have two separate lots, both with 100 shares. One lot has been held for more than a year and thus will be taxed at the long-term rate. One lot has been held for less than a year and will be taxed at the short-term rate.

If you sell all your shares, you'd have long-term gains from the first lot and short-term gains from the second lot (or losses depending on how the stock has moved).

If you sold 100 shares, you'd have to determine what cost basis method you are using. There are three allowed methods-- FIFO, LIFO, and specific shares. If you are using FIFO, you'd sell the first 100 shares you purchased and realize long-term gains (or losses). If you are using LIFO, you'd sell the most recent 100 shares you purchased and realize short-term gains (or losses). If you use specific shares, you'd identify at the time of sale which of the two lots you were selling and could choose whether to realize short- or long-term gains. In general, using the specific shares method is the most tax efficient way to operate but it requires more record keeping than the other two approaches.

  • Actually since AAPL split last August his longterm lot is 400 shares, with the basis of the original 100. Also, since roughly 2012 (varies by type) brokers have been required to do this record keeping (acq date and basis per lot) and report it to IRS at end of the year you sell; (IME) all I've used were already doing it since before 2000, and show it on their website although I often have to find an 'expand details' button. This means you must choose FIFO/LIFO/specific when you sell or in advance, not sometime afterwards (as you could in the past). Commented Mar 3, 2021 at 7:20

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