incurred to acquire or carry “real estate assets” (as described below under “-Asset Tests”), and the instrument is properly identified as a hedge along with the risk that it hedges within prescribed time periods. Income and gain from all other hedging transactions will not be qualifying income for either the 95% or 75% gross income test.
If we fail to satisfy one or both of the 75% or 95% gross income tests for any taxable year, including as a result of income and gains from the disposition of TBAs being treated as nonqualifying income for purposes of the 75% gross income test, we may still qualify as a REIT for such year if we are entitled to relief under applicable provisions of the Internal Revenue Code. These relief provisions will be generally available if (1) our failure to meet these tests was due to reasonable cause and not due to willful neglect and (2) following our identification of the failure to meet the 75% or 95% gross income test for any taxable year, we file a schedule with the IRS setting forth each item of our gross income for purposes of the 75% or 95% gross income test for such taxable year in accordance with Treasury regulations yet to be issued. It is not possible to state whether we would be entitled to the benefit of these relief provisions in all circumstances. If these relief provisions are inapplicable to a particular set of circumstances, we will not qualify as a REIT. As discussed above under “-Taxation of REITs in General,” even where these relief provisions apply, the Internal Revenue Code imposes a tax based upon the amount by which we fail to satisfy the particular gross income test.
Under The Housing and Economic Recovery Tax Act of 2008, the Secretary of the Treasury has been given broad authority to determine whether particular items of gain or income recognized after July 30, 2008, qualify or not under the 75% and 95% gross income tests, or are to be excluded from the measure of gross income for such purposes.
At the close of each calendar quarter, we must also satisfy five tests relating to the nature of our assets. First, at least 75% of the value of our total assets must be represented by some combination of “real estate assets,” cash, cash items (including certain money market funds), U.S. government securities, and, under some circumstances, stock or debt instruments purchased with new capital. For this purpose, real estate assets include some kinds of mortgage-backed securities and mortgage loans, debt instruments (whether or not secured by real property) that are issued by a “publicly offered REIT” (i.e., a REIT that is required to file annual and periodic reports with the Securities and Exchange Commission under the Securities Exchange Act of 1934), as well as interests in real property and stock of other corporations that qualify as REITs. Assets that do not qualify for purposes of the 75% asset test are subject to the additional asset tests described below.
Second, the value of any one issuer's securities that we own may not exceed 5% of the value of our total assets.
Third, we may not own more than 10% of any one issuer's outstanding securities, as measured by either voting power or value. The 5% and 10% asset tests do not apply to securities of TRSs and qualified REIT subsidiaries and the value prong of the 10% asset test does not apply to “straight debt” having specified characteristics and to certain other securities described below. Solely for purposes of the value prong of the 10% asset test, the determination of our interest in the assets of a partnership or limited liability company in which we own an interest will be based on our proportionate interest in any securities issued by the partnership or limited liability company, excluding for this purpose certain securities described in the Internal Revenue Code.
Fourth, the aggregate value of all securities of TRSs that we hold may not exceed 20% of the value of our total assets.
Fifth, no more than 25% of the total value of our assets may be represented by “nonqualified publicly offered REIT debt instruments” (i.e., real estate assets that would cease to be real estate assets if debt instruments issued by publicly offered REITs were not included in the definition of real estate assets).
Notwithstanding the general rule, as noted above, that for purposes of the REIT income and asset tests we are treated as owning our proportionate share of the underlying assets of a subsidiary partnership, if we hold indebtedness issued by a partnership, the indebtedness will be subject to, and may cause a violation of, the asset tests unless the indebtedness is a qualifying mortgage asset or other conditions are met. Similarly, although stock of another REIT is a qualifying asset for purposes of the REIT asset tests, any non-mortgage debt that is issued by a REIT that is not “publicly offered” may not so qualify (such debt, however, will not be treated as “securities” for purposes of the value prong of the 10% asset test, as explained below).
Certain securities will not cause a violation of the value prong of the 10% asset test described above. Such securities include instruments that constitute “straight debt,” which term generally excludes, among other things, securities having certain contingency features. A security does not qualify as “straight debt” where a REIT (or a controlled TRS of the REIT) owns other securities of the same issuer which do not qualify as straight debt, unless the value of those other securities constitute, in the aggregate, 1% or less of the total value of that issuer's outstanding securities. In addition to straight debt, the Internal Revenue