Selling stocks at a loss in a TFSA: What it means for your contribution room Apr 11th

All about Canadian investments. Learn the ins and outs and get the latest news.
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Ask MoneySense
I lost $20,000 dollars in my TFSA account in the market correction, and my broker sold the losing stocks. Can I put more money in to bring me back up the to the limit the government allows?—Wayne

Capital losses in a TFSA

A capital loss is when you sell an investment at a lower price than what you purchased it for originally. In a taxable non-registered account, like a cash or margin account, capital gains and capital losses have income tax implications. You report them on your tax return. In a tax-sheltered account like a registered retirement savings plan (RRSP) or a tax-free account like a tax-free savings account (TFSA), a capital loss is relevant for investment purposes, but not for tax purposes.

That means there are no tax savings if you sell an investment for a capital loss in a TFSA. Mind you, there is no tax payable for a capital gain—selling for a profit—either.

To answer your question directly, Wayne, you do not get additional TFSA room if you have a capital loss…

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