Give Your Beaten-Down Stocks to the Kiddos

Gift shares tax-free.

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Got some sad-looking stocks in your portfolio? A story in the WSJ today, " How to Fix Your Life in 2009," offers this creative suggestion:

Consider giving some of that stock to your kids. There's a silver lining to stock prices' descent: You can give away more shares tax free. In 2008, an individual can give as much as $12,000 to each gift recipient before getting hit with gift taxes. That amount will rise to $13,000 in 2009. The gift helps reduce the size of your estate -- probably a good idea since the estate tax isn't likely to go away soon, financial advisers say. It also may allow the recipients to enjoy a nice rebound from today's depressed stock prices over the long haul.

Might make an interesting birthday gift...although they might not appreciate it just yet.