Indexing Capital Gains by Fiat

3 Pages Posted: 15 May 2012

Date Written: May 14, 2012


For many years, conservatives have asserted that the Treasury Department has the authority to index capital gains for inflation without legislation. It could simply redefine the term "cost" for calculating basis to mean inflation-adjusted cost, they say. This paper reviews the history of this idea, which has been rejected by both Treasury and the Department of Justice, because it appears that the same people who have supported it in the past are gearing up for another effort.

Keywords: capital gains, indexing

JEL Classification: H20, K34

Suggested Citation

Bartlett, Bruce, Indexing Capital Gains by Fiat (May 14, 2012). Tax Notes, Vol. 135, No. 7, 2012, Available at SSRN:

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