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Tax revenue linked to asset markets jumps 76% in H1

Tax collection on properties, stocks up W33tr during pandemic

South Korea’s tax revenue from asset markets surged nearly 76 percent on-year in the first half amid an increase in housing transactions and stock trading, a ruling party lawmaker said Monday.

According to data submitted by the Ministry of Economy and Finance to Rep. Yang Kyung-sook of the ruling Democratic Party, the government collected about 36.7 trillion won ($31.5 billion) worth of tax revenue linked to asset markets in the January-June period.

The government’s total tax income includes collections from property transfers, inheritances and gifts, securities transactions, and a special tax on farming and fishing villages. The amount jumped by 15.8 trillion won or 75.6 percent on-year, the data showed.

A major contributor to the increase was property transfer taxes, which accounted for nearly half of the total. They amounted to 18.3 trillion won, a 64.9 percent increase from a year earlier.

Taxes from inherited and gifted assets came to 8.4 trillion won, up 4.3 trillion won or 104.9 percent from a year earlier, over the cited period. Among the taxes collected, 2.3 trillion won came from the estate of Samsung Group Chairman Lee Kun-hee.

Active stock transactions were also a factor.

Securities transaction taxes soared 2.2 trillion won or 66.7 percent on-year to 5.5 trillion won, backed by a market frenzy surrounding stocks amid a bull run from the pandemic-hit market.

From September last year to May, stock transactions increased in amount by 99 percent on-year to 3,811 trillion won, according to the data.

While taxes collected from the bullish stock market and the sizzling real estate market last year recorded 17.1 trillion won and 15.8 trillion won so far this year, the accumulated tax revenue stood at nearly 33 trillion won in the pandemic era.

Including comprehensive real estate holding taxes, which are to be collected at the end of the year, the government is expected to see a further increase in property tax revenue this year.

By Jie Ye-eun (
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Korea Herald daum