Crypto Taxes: 2024 Rates and How to Calculate What You Owe

Yes, you likely have to pay crypto taxes. Profits from crypto are subject to capital gains taxes, just like stocks.
Kurt Woock
By Kurt Woock 
Updated
Edited by Claire Tsosie

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Nerdy takeaways
  • Crypto taxes are a percentage of your gains. The rate depends on how long you owned the crypto and your income.

  • Short-term capital gains tax rates range from 10% to 37%. Long-term rates can be as low as 0% or as high as 20%.

  • Selling crypto for a loss and moving wallets generally won't generate tax liability, but staking and crypto-crypto trading do.

Nerdy takeaways
  • Crypto taxes are a percentage of your gains. The rate depends on how long you owned the crypto and your income.

  • Short-term capital gains tax rates range from 10% to 37%. Long-term rates can be as low as 0% or as high as 20%.

  • Selling crypto for a loss and moving wallets generally won't generate tax liability, but staking and crypto-crypto trading do.

When you sell cryptocurrency, you are subject to the federal capital gains tax. This is the same tax you pay for the sale of other assets, including stocks.

How and when is crypto taxed?

Crypto taxes are a percentage of your gains. The rate is determined by two factors:

  1. How long you owned the crypto. If you sold it after more than a year, you’ll generally pay less in taxes than if you sold sooner.

  2. Your annual income. In general, the higher your taxable income, the higher your rate.

You are only taxed on cryptocurrency if you sell it, whether for cash or for another cryptocurrency. So, if you bought $100 of cryptocurrency that is now worth $200 and you still own it, you aren’t taxed.

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Short-term capital gains tax for crypto

If you own cryptocurrency for one year or less before selling, you’ll pay the short-term capital gains tax. Short-term capital gains taxes are higher than long-term capital gains taxes.

Any profits from short-term capital gains are added to all other taxable income for the year, and you calculate your taxes on the entire amount. This means short-term gains are taxed as ordinary income. Like with income, you'll end up paying a different tax rate for the portion of your income that falls into each tax bracket.

For example, if you’re a single filer, you’d pay 10% on the first $11,000 of income. Then, you’d pay 12% on the next chunk of income, up to $44,725. Below are the full short-term capital gains tax rates, which apply to cryptocurrency and are the same as the federal income tax brackets. You can also estimate your potential tax bill with our crypto tax calculator.

Short-term tax rates if you sell crypto in 2024 (taxes due in 2025)

Tax rate

Single

Married filing jointly

Married filing separately

Head of household

10%

$0 to $11,600

$0 to $23,200

$0 to $11,600

$0 to $16,550

12%

$11,601 to $47,150

$23,201 to $94,300

$11,601 to $47,150

$16,551 to $63,100

22%

$47,151 to $100,525

$94,301 to $201,050

$47,151 to $100,525

$63,101 to $100,500

24%

$100,526 to $191,950

$201,051 to $383,900

$100,526 to $191,950

$100,501 to $191,950

32%

$191,951 to $243,725

$383,901 to $487,450

$191,951 to $243,725

$191,951 to $243,700

35%

$243,726 to $609,350

$487,451 to $731,200

$243,726 to $365,600

$243,701 to $609,350

37%

$609,351 or more

$731,201 or more

$365,601 or more

$609,350 or more

Short-term tax rates if you sold crypto in 2023 (taxes due in 2024)

Tax rate

Single

Married filing jointly

Married filing separately

Head of household

10%

$0 to $11,000

$0 to $22,000

$0 to $11,000

$0 to $15,700

12%

$11,001 to $44,725

$22,001 to $89,450

$11,001 to $44,725

$15,701 to $59,850

22%

$44,726 to $95,375

$89,451 to $190,750

$44,726 to $95,375

$59,851 to $95,350

24%

$95,376 to $182,100

$190,751 to $364,200

$95,376 to $182,100

$95,351 to $182,100

32%

$182,101 to $231,250

$364,201 to $462,500

$182,101 to $231,250

$182,101 to $231,250

35%

$231,251 to $578,125

$462,501 to $693,750

$231,251 to $346,875

$231,251 to $578,100

37%

$578,126 or more

$693,751 or more

$346,876 or more

$578,101 or more

Long-term capital gains tax for crypto

If you sell cryptocurrency after owning it for more than a year, you’ll pay long-term capital gains. Long-term capital gains have their own system of tax rates. While these types of gains aren’t taxed as ordinary income, you still use your taxable income to determine the long-term capital gains bracket you’re in. Depending on your income and filing status, you’ll generally either pay 0%, 15% or 20% on your long-term gains.

» New to crypto investing? Here's our guide to getting started

Long-term rates if you sell crypto in 2024 (taxes due in April 2025)

Filing status

0%

15%

20%

Single

$0 to $47,025

$47,026 to $518,900

$518,901 or more

Married filing jointly

$0 to $94,050

$94,051 to $583,750

$583,751 or more

Married filing separately

$0 to $47,025

$47,026 to $291,850

$291,851 or more

Head of household

$0 to $63,000

$63,001 to $551,350

$551,351 or more

Short-term capital gains are taxed as ordinary income according to federal income tax brackets.

Long-term rates if you sold crypto in 2023 (taxes due in April 2024)

Filing status

0%

15%

20%

Single

$0 to $44,625

$44,626 to $492,300

$492,301 or more

Married filing jointly

$0 to $89,250

$89,251 to $553,850

$553,851 or more

Married filing separately

$0 to $44,625

$44,626 to $276,900

$276,901 or more

Head of household

$0 to $59,750

$59,751 to $523,050

$523,051 or more

Short-term capital gains are taxed as ordinary income according to federal income tax brackets.

Cryptocurrency tax FAQs

What if I sold cryptocurrency for a loss?

If you sell crypto for less than you bought it for, you can use those losses to offset gains you made elsewhere. The resulting number is sometimes called your net gain. For example:

  • You buy $100 of Crypto ABC and $100 of Crypto XYZ.

  • You later sell ABC for $75 (a loss of $25) and XYZ for $200 (a gain of $100).

  • Your potential taxable amount would be $75 ($100-$25).

If your losses exceed your gains, you can use the additional amount to reduce your taxable income, up to $3,000 in most cases. You can then use, or “carry over,” any remaining losses to offset gains in future years.

Will I be taxed if I change wallets?

No. Transferring cryptocurrency from one wallet you own to another you own does not count as selling it. You won’t be taxed.

» Learn more about the best crypto wallets.

Are my staking or mining rewards taxed?

Yes. The IRS considers staking rewards as income that must be reported, as well as any cryptocurrencies received through mining. Other forms of cryptocurrency transactions that the IRS says must be reported include:

  • Buying property, goods or services with crypto.

  • Receiving crypto for goods or services.

  • Receiving crypto after a hard fork (a change in the underlying blockchain).

  • Receiving an airdrop (a common crypto marketing technique).

Do I still pay taxes if I traded cryptocurrency for another cryptocurrency?

Yes. The IRS is clear about this: If you trade cryptocurrency for any other asset, including other cryptocurrencies, it’s a taxable event.

What forms do I need?

You’ll record the history for all relevant transactions on IRS Form 8949 and summarize that information on Form 1040 along with capital gains from any other investments.

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Is it easy to do this myself?

It depends. It’s easier to manage if your exchange sends you the proper tax forms.

Most of the U.S.-based centralized exchanges have good data management practices.

Compiling the information can be time-consuming work, especially if you’ve made many trades. But crypto-specific tax software that connects to your crypto exchange, compiles the information and generates IRS Form 8949 for you can make this task easier.

Some complex situations probably require professional assistance. You might want to consider consulting a tax professional if:

  • You have many hundreds or thousands of transactions.

  • Your transactions are on-chain or if you used an exchange that isn’t based in the U.S.

  • The crypto you sold was purchased before 2016.

  • You just want peace of mind.

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