President Donald Trump is still considering a capital gains tax cut through indexing gains to inflation, and he was meeting with economic advisers Wednesday to further discuss the option that could inject the U.S. economy with a bit of stimulus.
An anonymous tipster, who asked to not be revealed because the meeting was not publicly announced, mentioned the it was happening, but they did not think a final decision on whether to pursue the indexing would happen during the talks, according to Bloomberg. In August, Trump didn’t throw out the option of cutting capital gains taxes, but he did think the move that mostly benefits the wealthy could be seen as “somewhat elitist.”
Trump sees the capital gains tax cut as a means to stimulate a U.S. economy that is showing cracks as it continues its longest period of economic expansion on record.
But would it be enough? A cut of this nature wouldn’t benefit many middle-class taxpayers, according to Bloomberg. The biggest benefits would come to investors that would see a lower tax bill when selling stock or real estate because indexing would eliminate the tax paid on appreciation tied to inflation.
The idea has been floating around the White House for a while, according to Trump’s comments back in August, and he claims the only thing he would need to execute the order would be a letter from the attorney general, bypassing any need for congressional approval.
“We’ve been talking about indexing for a long time,” Trump said when the news originally dropped on Aug. 20. “And many people like indexing and it could be done very simply.”
A day later, though, Trump seemingly flip-flopped on his stance.
“I’m not looking at doing indexing,” Trump said. “And I haven’t been seriously looking at it. It’s not something I love.”
Using his executive powers to start cutting capital gains taxes would likely face legal opposition as well. President George H.W. Bush’s administration was going to pursue the tax cut, but called it off when faced with the proposition of a legal battle.