Employee stock options are an increasingly popular compensation perk, allowing employees to purchase shares of their employer's company at a specified price by a specific date.
There are two different types: non-qualified stock options (NQSOs) and incentive stock options (ISOs).
In the case of ISOs, it is said that the sale of stock is a qualifying disposition if you owned the stock for at least two years after the grant date and at least one year after the exercise date.
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Selling short is borrowing a security from a broker and selling it, with the understanding that it must later be bought back (hopefully at a lower price) and returned to the broker.
SEC rules allow investors to sell short only on an uptick or a zero-plus tick, to prevent "pool operators" from driving down a stock price through heavy short-selling, then buying the shares for a large profit.
Reinvested distributions are taxed in the same way as distributions paid to the shareholder.