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Subject:  Wash sale rule Date:  12/20/2013  10:42 AM
Author:  RBMunkin Number:  119738 of 132134

"The rule defines a wash sale as one that occurs when an individual sells or trades a security at a loss, and within 30 days before or after this sale, buys a “substantially identical” stock or security, or acquires a contract or option to do so."

I understand the reasoning in a situation where someone buys XYZ in the past, sells it at a loss, and then buys it again within 30 days.

But this rule seems to also be saying that you can't deduct a loss if you buy ABC and then sell it at a loss within 30 days, even if you don't buy it back. Am I reading that correctly? It says "within 30 days BEFORE or after"

That can't be right. Do they mean:
If someone owns 100 shares of DEF and then buys another 100 shares and within 30 days of that purchase sells 100 shares, he cannot apply the sale to the more recent purchase as a loss. Does that make more sense?

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