Bitcoin, Ethereum & Co.
Taxation of Cryptocurrencies, Coins and Tokens
Pecularities for tax return
The amount of crypto-assets held on 31.12. of a year must be shown as assets in the list of securities and credit balances in the tax return. The ESTV (Swiss Federal Tax Administration) regularly publishes price lists with the average prices of various trading platforms to be applied at the end of the year. Alternatively, the average price to be applied on 31st December can be determined by the taxpayer, assumed this leads to a correct result.
A distinction must be made between tax-exempt, private asset management and taxable, commercial trading. Profits generated within the scope of private asset management are tax-exempted pursuant to Art. 16 para. 3 DBG (Swiss Income Tax Act). In return, losses are not tax deductible.
Capital gains are taxable if the limit to commercial trading is exceeded. The criteria of ESTV Directive no. 36 (circular on professional securities trading) serve to distinguish private asset management from professional trading. Small investors who invest their savings in crypto-assets, do not use outside capital / loans and do not engage in trading as their main occupation are generally only engaged in private asset management. Their profits are tax-free.
Whether tax-free, private asset management or taxable, commercial trading is involved must be examined in each individual case.
Please be aware that the income generated from cryptoassets may be subject to social security contributions if the activities are qualified as a self-employment.