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What taxes will I pay when I invest? Add to ...

Taxes can have a large impact on your return. There are different tax rules depending on the type of investment you have. For example, there are different rules for investments that:

• Pay interest
• Pay dividends
• Produce a capital gain when sold
• Are a foreign investment

Calculating your net return after tax: Sallia's story

To see how taxes affect an entire investment portfolio, read Calculating your net return after tax: Sallia's story

Remember that if you invest in a sheltered plan, such as a Registered Retirement Savings Plan (RRSP), you won’t pay the tax due until you withdraw the money out of the plan.

What taxes will I pay on interest?

• Interest is treated the same as income from your job. The rate you pay depends on your tax bracket.
• You pay tax on 100% of any interest you earn.

What taxes will I pay on dividends from Canadian corporations?

Dividends get better treatment at tax time than interest or job income. Here's how to calculate the tax:

2. Add 44% (this is called dividend gross-up).
4. Calculate the tax on that grossed-up amount.
5. Claim a federal dividend tax credit of18% of the grossed-up dividends.
6. Claim a provincial tax credit of 6.4% of the grossed-up dividends.

Example: Let’s say you earned \$800 in dividends. Here’s how you calculate the tax:

• First gross up (increase) \$800 by 44% to \$1,152 (\$800 x 1.44). This is your grossed-up dividend.
• Calculate the tax on your grossed-up dividend. Let's assume that based on the tax bracket you are in, you have a federal tax rate of 22%, and a provincial tax rate of 9.15%. You would have pay \$253 in federal tax (\$1,152 x 0.22) and \$105 in provincial tax (\$1,152 x 0.0915) for a total of \$358.
• Claim a dividend tax credit on the grossed-up dividends at a rate of approximately 18%. This reduces your federal tax by \$207 (\$1,152 x 0.18) to \$46 (\$253 - \$207). It also reduces your provincial tax by \$74 (\$1,152 x 0.064) to \$31 (\$105-\$74).

The result: Your total tax bill is only \$77 on \$800 of dividend earnings. You would pay a lot more tax, closer to \$250, on \$800 earned at your job or on interest.

What taxes will I pay on capital gains from Canadian corporations?

• You pay the least tax on capital gains. Capital gains occur when you sell an investment, like a stock, for more than you paid for it. If you sell for less than you paid, you get a capital loss.
• At tax time, you subtract your losses from your gains. This tells you your net gains.
• You pay tax on only 50%, or half, of your net gains. At least to this small extent, the government gives you a tax break when you take more risk to make money.

Tip: You get an even better break if you donate some securities to a charity: you do not pay tax on any capital gains in these cases.

What taxes will I pay on foreign investments?

• If dividends or capital gains come from investments outside of Canada, they are taxed like income from your job.
• Interest-bearing investments like Certificates of Deposit (CDs) from the United States are also taxed like employment income.

Remember: Taxes can really affect your return on investment

With some smart tax planning, you can reduce the tax you pay now; put off (defer) some tax for later; and invest the money you saved in taxes so it will grow for you.

Content in this section is provided in partnership with the Investor Education Fund, a non-profit organization promoting financial literacy to Canadians. To find out more go to GetSmarterAboutMoney.ca.