Microsoft boss Satya Nadella has sold a large part of his shares in the Redmond software company. He sold half of the shares he had received so far – probably to avoid an upcoming tax.
The company made the sale of shares public in a mandatory disclosure to the US Securities and Exchange Commission. Accordingly, Nadella has sold around 840,000 shares in Microsoft at a price of $285 million. The securities were not sold as a package but in a series of sales.
According to the announcement, the sale of shares was justified with personal financial planning and the desired diversification of one’s own portfolio. The sale of the Microsoft shares, therefore, has nothing to do with a decreased confidence in the future success of Microsoft. The minimum participation set by the Microsoft supervisory board is also clearly exceeded by Nadella’s remaining shareholdings.
New Tax will finance daycare centers
For the sale, there is probably another understandable explanation, as the Wall Street Journal reports. In Washington State, a new legal regulation on capital gains tax that was passed last spring will soon come into force. On longer-term capital gains, such as those generated by Microsoft’s share package through the dividends distributed annually, a tax of 7 percent is due from the new year if the income is over $250,000. With the sale, Nadella will have to pay significantly fewer taxes.
In Washington, it is expected that the new capital gains tax will add an additional $550 million a year to the public coffers. The state intends to use the funds to expand preschool childcare and the associated educational opportunities, which were previously chronically underfunded.
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