The economic downturn of eight years ago caused a sharp decline in sales of capital assets reported on individual returns, according to the IRS Winter 2016 Statistics of Income Bulletin.

The IRS reported that total realized capital gains less losses declined by approximately 96 percent between 2007 and 2009, from $914 billion to $37 billion. Net gains then increased to $373.4 billion in 2010 and $639.9 billion in tax year 2012.

Of these gains, passthrough entities and corporate stock sales made up the largest categories reported by taxpayers in each year. In 2007, taxpayers reported $384.8 billion in gains from passthrough entities, the largest category for every year. Gains of this type then declined in both 2008 and 2009 and then increased each year through 2012, to $320.9 billion.

Among the Bulletin’s other information:

  • Tax-exempt public charities filed nearly 280,000 Forms 990 and 990-EZ and reported $3.3 trillion in assets for tax year 2012, an increase of 6 percent from the previous year.
  • U.S.-source income paid to foreign persons totaled $672.9 billion for calendar 2012, an increase of 18.4 percent from 2011.
  • For tax year 2013, taxpayers reported non-farm sole proprietorship activity on approximately 24.1 million individual income tax returns, a 2.2 percent increase from 2012. Profits fell to $302.3 billion in 2013, a 0.9 percent drop from the previous year.
  • For tax year 2011, corporations claimed more than $107 billion in foreign tax credits, a decline of 9.3 percent from 2010. European countries were responsible for almost 40 percent of the total foreign source taxable income; Asia accounted for slightly more than a fifth.

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