selling short against the box

Selling short against the box

Selling short stock that is actually owned by the seller but held in the box, meaning it is held in safekeeping. The seller borrows securities needed to cover as the stock in the box may be inaccessible, or the seller may not wish to disclose ownership. The traditional motive for this transaction was to defer capital gains taxes. However, this method became infeasible under the Taxpayer Relief Act of 1997.

Short Sell Against the Box

Describing the action of short selling a security one owns. When one sells against the box, gains and losses are equalized by the long position on a security combined with the short position created by the short sale. One formerly sold against the box generally in order to be able to claim profits on the sale in the following tax year, but the Taxpayer Relief Act of 1997 largely removed this loophole.

selling short against the box