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Capital loss

The loss from the sale of assets such as stocks, bonds, mutual funds and real estate. Such losses are first used to offset capital gains and then up to $3,000 of excess losses can be deducted against other income, such as your salary. Long- and short-term losses (distinguished by whether the property was held for more than one year or a shorter period of time) are first used to offset gains of a similar nature. Any excess first offsets the other kind of gain, then other types of income.