Giving away stocks, or other appreciated assets is an especially timely move to consider before year end.
With the S&P 500 index up more than 300 percent and the Nasdaq more than 400 percent since the March 2009 low, any money in taxable accounts has likely produced some hefty unrealized capital gains. Even if you want to rebalance — you do, right? — you're not exactly looking forward to the tax bill.
Donating stock, fund shares — or just about any appreciated asset — will wipe out any capital gains tax bill assuming you owned the asset for at least one year. You can also claim the value of the donation as a charitable deduction in the year you make the move.