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German Word of the Day: Vermögen

Aaron Burnett
Aaron Burnett - [email protected]
German Word of the Day: Vermögen
Photo: Annie Spratt/Unsplash/Nicolas Raymond

You'll find this word everywhere from the newspaper to your tax return.

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Vermögen is an important word in German to understand everything from international affairs to how to run your company to how to file your tax return.

It can mean "assets" or "capital" and is associated strongly with financial wealth.

Where might you see it or how might you use it?

Vermögen, pronounced like this, is a neutral noun, so uses the das article. 

You might often see it in compounded with other words for a more precise meaning. These include Vermögenswerte (financial assets) or Kapitalvermögen (capital assets), which refers specifically to money invested to generate income or returns.

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Examples:

Vermögen has popped up in recent current affairs, such as in the debate over whether western countries will seize Russian central assets.

For example, in a headline like this: Beschlagnahmtes Russland-Vermögen für den Wiederaufbau? - or "Russia's confiscated assets for the reconstruction?"

But in a more everyday example, you could be asked for your Einkommen aus Kapitalvermögen on your tax return - or your "income from investment assets."

EXPLAINED: What you should know about investing in Germany

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