Tax Implications on US Stocks in India

Tax Implications on US Stocks in India
Tax Implications on US Stocks in India

by Tanushree Jaiswal Last Updated: Aug 31, 2023 - 11:05 am 326 Views

Due to international tax regulations, tax on US stocks in India might be complicated. Indian citizens purchasing US equities may be liable to several taxes, including capital gains tax, dividend tax, and laws governing foreign currency. Capital gains tax on US stocks in India is based on how long an investment is held. Additionally, the taxation on US stock in India may be impacted by the Double Taxation Avoidance Agreements (DTAAs) and the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA) between India and the US. To ensure compliance with Indian and US tax legislation, investors should obtain assistance from tax experts to understand their tax duties and reporting needs.

What are US Stocks?

Shares of ownership interests in businesses listed on US stock exchanges like the NYSE and Nasdaq are known as US stocks. Firms enable investors to purchase a stake in the business by issuing shares to the general public. Purchasing US stocks may provide advantages, including ownership in reputable and promising companies, involvement in their expansion, and the opportunity for dividend income. Monetary conditions, world events, and investor mood influence stock prices. 

The diverse spectrum of businesses and sectors represented by US equities includes consumer goods, healthcare, technology, and the financial industry. They are affected by things like business performance, the state of the economy, world events, and investor sentiment. Tax on US stocks in India have risks, just like any investment, and their prices might change depending on the market's state and the underlying businesses' success. Investors should do extensive research before investing in US equities and consider their risk tolerance.

Why are Indian Investors Interested in US Stocks?

Due to several strong factors, Indian investors are becoming increasingly interested in US stocks. The US stock market, which offers a wide range of investment options across many sectors, is among the biggest and most developed in the world. Due to this diversity, Indian investors can access cutting-edge technology firms, global enterprises, and ground-breaking startups that might not otherwise be traded on the Indian stock market. Second, US stocks have traditionally demonstrated great growth potential and reliable returns over the long term. Due to their widespread global presence, many blue-chip US corporations are more resilient to economic downturns, giving investors a sense of stability.

Additionally, the US dollar's position as the world's reserve currency attracts Indian investors seeking to diversify their portfolios and guard against currency risks. Indian investors also view tax on US stocks in India as a chance to profit from global trends and businesses, such as e-commerce, biotechnology, renewable energy, and artificial intelligence, that drive technical innovation and advancement. Furthermore, some US equities give investors passive income by paying out dividends regularly. Last, Indian investors are urged to use US stocks to protect themselves against home market risks and geopolitical unpredictability. They can lower the total risk exposure of their portfolios by spreading their investments globally.

What are the Tax Implications of Investing in US stocks?

Investments in US equities may have tax repercussions depending on several variables, including the holding duration, US stock tax residency, and type of income from the investment. The following are some important tax implications of investing in US stocks from India:

Capital Gains Tax: If you profitably sell US equities, you might be required to pay capital gains taxes on US stocks. In the US, capital gains tax rates are determined by how long a holding period is used. The long-term capital gains US stocks tax rate for international investors, including Indian residents, is typically 15% or 20%, depending on the person's income level.
Dividend Tax: If the US equities you own pay dividends, the US and India may tax your income. Tax on US stocks in India typically withholds dividends paid to foreign investors at a flat rate of 25%; if India and the US have a tax treaty, this withholding tax can be decreased. 
Foreign Exchange Profits/Losses: Any foreign exchange profits or losses resulting from exchange rate changes while purchasing US equities may be subject to taxation on US stocks in India.
US Stock Tax Reporting: Indian residents who invest in US stocks must adhere to both countries' tax reporting regulations. It includes disclosing overseas assets and income in India following the Income Tax Act and the Overseas Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA).
Double Taxes Avoidance Agreement (DTAA): To prevent double taxes on specific categories of income, India and the US have a DTAA. Optimizing taxes on US stock liabilities may be possible with an understanding of the DTAA's provisions.

What are the Tax Implications?

Indian residents should be aware of the financial repercussions of investing in US equities, including capital gains tax on US stocks in India proceeds, dividend taxes on US stocks that pay dividends, foreign exchange gains/losses, and compliance with tax reporting rules in both countries. India and the US have a DTAA (Double Taxation Avoidance Agreement) to avoid double taxes on specific types of income. To fully comprehend and handle these complications, it is essential to seek professional tax guidance.

1. Tax on Dividends

Tax on dividends is the term used to describe how revenue from a company's profits that is handed to shareholders as dividends is taxed. Depending on the country's tax regulations and the person's tax residency, dividends may be subject to various tax rates. Dividends are taxed differently than regular income in many nations, including the United States. It's also known as the "dividend tax rate." 

For some investors, dividends are a desirable kind of investment income because the tax rate on dividends can be less favorable than the individual's ordinary income tax rate. Investors should be aware of any potential tax benefits or deductions connected to dividend income and the appropriate tax rates in their country of tax residence. Investors can grasp the tax ramifications of dividends and adjust their investing plans accordingly by seeking assistance from a tax expert.

2. Capital Gains Tax

The gain from capital asset sales, like stocks, real estate, or other assets, is subject to capital gains tax. It is the discrepancy between the asset's selling and initial purchase prices. Depending on the length of the holding period, capital gains can be divided into either short-term or long-term. Short-term capital gains are those from the sale of assets held for a year or less subject to ordinary income tax at the individual's rate. 

The sale of assets held for longer than a year results in long-term capital gains, which are frequently subject to preferential tax rates, which are normally lower than ordinary income tax rates. The capital gains tax rates may range depending on the type of asset being sold and may vary from nation to nation. Depending on several variables, including the person's tax residency status and the kind of investment, several countries may offer exemptions or deductions to lower the tax burden on capital gains.

Capital Gains

Capital gains are the gains from selling a capital asset, like stocks, real estate, or investments, for more money than what was initially paid. The gap between the selling price and the cost basis (original price) is what it symbolizes. According to the holding time and the individual's tax residency, capital gains can be categorized as short-term (assets held for one year or less) or long-term (purchases kept for more than one year). Depending on the holding period and the individual's tax residency, they may be subject to certain tax rates.

1. LTCG (Long Term Capital Gains)

Long-term capital gains tax USA are profits from the sale of capital assets held for longer than a specific period, typically one year, in many tax jurisdictions. Short-term capital gains are handled differently from long-term ones and frequently qualify for lower tax rates. Long-term investments are encouraged in several nations, notably the United States, where the long-term capital gains tax USA rate is lower than the standard income tax rate. According to the country's tax regulations and the individual's income level, the specific LTCG tax on US stocks in India varies. 

Certain nations may provide exemptions or lower tax rates on LTCG to encourage long-term investment and economic growth. Investors should be aware of the local tax laws that apply to long-term capital gains and take such laws into account when making investment decisions. By consulting with a tax expert, investors can improve their tax planning and ensure they align with long-term capital gains tax USA requirements.

2. STCG (Short-Term Capital Gains)

In various tax jurisdictions, the term "short-term capital gains" (STCG) refers to the profit made from the sale of a capital asset held for a brief period, usually one year or less. Long-term capital gains tax USA is treated differently from short-term capital gains, and STCG is frequently subject to the taxpayer's ordinary income tax rate, which may be greater. The asset's holding time influences whether the gains are categorized as long- or short-term. Gains made in the short term are typically the result of shorter-term investments or more frequent trading, including stock trading or fast sales of other assets.

Depending on the country, different asset classes may be subject to different tax rates or exemptions, affecting how STCG is taxed. Investors must know the STCG tax laws in their jurisdiction when engaging in short-term investing activities and consider the tax consequences. Investors can efficiently comprehend and handle their STCG tax obligations by consulting a tax expert.


Indian investors must understand the tax implications on US stocks in India before investing in particular capital gains and dividend tax. These tax issues may impact investment returns and compliance requirements. Proper tax planning and seeking competent guidance are necessary to handle the complexity of foreign taxation and guarantee conformity to pertinent laws and treaties. Investors can maximize the advantages of tax implications of investing in US stocks from India while following tax laws in both India and the US and by being proactive and knowledgeable about their investments.

Frequently Asked Questions

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About the Author

Tanushree is a seasoned professional with 6 years of experience in the Fintech and Edtech industry.


Investment/Trading in securities Market is subject to market risk, past performance is not a guarantee of future performance. The risk of loss in trading and investment in Securities markets including Equites and Derivatives can be substantial.
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