Overview

"Gains or losses are said to be "realized" when a stock (or other investment) that you own is actually sold. Unrealized gains and losses are also commonly known as "paper" profits or losses. An unrealized loss occurs when a stock decreases after an investor buys it, but has yet to sell it". Retrieved from Investopedia

 

"Average cost basis is defined as the means to attribute the purchase price to shares underlying a mutual fund or an account managed by a custodian (broker). It is calculated as the total amount paid to purchase the mutual fund or investment in a custodian account divided by the total number of underlying shares. The utility of the average cost basis method is its simplicity during multiple purchases, reinvestment of dividends, and actual capital gains" Retrieved from CFI

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