Robinhood investors, millennials who work through the app of the same name or other online trading platforms, bought and sold securities in the stock market en masse in recent months. They often carried out these transactions via foreign online platforms to avoid transaction costs. As a result, the Belgian tax on stock exchange transactions was often not deducted and passed on. But what is the tax on stock exchange transactions or TOB again?
Any sale, purchase, surrender and acquisition for consideration of Belgian or foreign securities entered into or executed in Belgium, through a professional intermediary, is subject to the TOB. Since January 1, 2017, such transactions are also deemed to have been entered into or executed in Belgium when the order to do so is given directly or indirectly to an intermediary established abroad.
The tax on stock exchange transactions is thus always due on transactions through foreign platforms (e.g. Etoro). However, intermediaries based abroad are not required to follow the Belgian tax provisions and therefore cannot be ordered to pay the Belgian stock exchange tax. This in comparison with a Belgian financial intermediary, who is legally obliged to mention the stock exchange tax separately on each account statement.
If a Belgian resident invests via foreign intermediaries, he or she will need to demonstrate that the tax has been withheld by the foreign intermediary. If this proves not to be the case, the client will have to submit the tax return himself and pay the tax.
What transactions are subject to the TOB?
Are subject to the tax on stock exchange transactions:
- Certificates representing shares;
- Bonds and treasury bills, shares of Beveks;
- Units of mutual funds;
Are not subject to the tax on stock exchange transactions:
- Cryptocurrency (Bitcoin, Ethereum,...)
The payment of the tax to which this declaration refers must be made at the latest on the last working day of the second month following the month in which the transaction was entered into or executed if the principal is the debtor of the TOB. In concrete terms, this means that the TOB for transactions carried out in May 2020 must be paid by 31 July 2020 at the latest.
In the event of late filing of the return, 12.50 euro fine per started week will be charged. In case of non-declaration, a default interest of 7% will be charged from the day the payment should have been made.
It is therefore important, as an investor, to always check whether the platform on which the transactions are carried out withholds and passes on the Belgian stock exchange tax. If this is not the case, you have to take care of the declaration and the payment of the tax yourself. Do you want more information on this subject? Contact one of our tax advisers.