Finmin may tweak proposal to double tax on debt MFs

Press Trust of India Posted online: Monday, Jul 21, 2014 at 0000 hrs
The finance ministry is contemplating tweaking Budget proposal to hike capital gains tax to 20% for debt mutual fund investors from prospective effect instead of April 1, 2014.

“There have been demands from mutual fund industry body and some announcement could be made at the time of reply of finance minister on Finance Bill debate in Parliament later in the month,” said a source.

The MF industry has been arguing that those who had invested in debt-oriented MFs prior to the announcement of Budget proposals should not be subjected to higher incidence of tax.

The finance ministry may extend lower tax rate of 10% to those investors who had redeemed their holding on or before July 10, sources said. Also the tax department is considering to exempt past investments whose redemptions would be made by March 2015.

“A final call will be taken after weighing the pros and cons,” an official said.

Finance minister Arun Jaitley in his Budget proposals on July 10 had said that long-term capital gains tax on debt-MFs will go up to 20% from 10%. The move is part of the government's effort to bring parity with banks and other debt instruments.

Besides the holding period for these units to be eligible for long-term capital gains has been hiked to 36 months from 12 months. Industry body AMFI has said new Budget rules should apply to close-ended debt schemes as against all non equity MF schemes as proposed.