There's still time to lower your tax bill by acting before year's end

The Ticker

November 10, 1999|By Julius Westheimer

WANT TO SAVE taxes between now and year's end? "Last-minute maneuvers ensure that you don't greet the new [year] with a tax hangover," says Kiplinger's Personal Finance Magazine.

"Charitable gifts made by Dec. 31 are 1999 tax deductions. Give appreciated stock, not cash; you avoid capital gains taxes. To reduce your taxable estate, you can give $10,000 a year to any number of recipients.

"Stash part of your year-end bonus in your firm's 401(k) plan. Clear out your medical `set-aside' account; money left in such an account evaporates at the end of the plan year."

And remember, on Jan. 1, the amount you can pass on estate-tax-free rises from $650,000 to $675,000."

WALL STREET WATCH: "The 30-stock Dow Jones average is too narrow and arbitrary -- even after the recent changes -- so use the S&P 500 as a gauge instead." (Kenneth Fisher, money manager)

"There's a high probability of a bear market ahead -- 95.92 percent, to be exact." (InvesTech Analysis, in Barron's)

"There's more interest rate trouble ahead. Investors will be highly vulnerable to negative debt-market developments." (Gillespie Letter)

"Use caution playing this rally. Set stop-loss orders to protect gains and capital." (Spear Report)

"Internet stocks' big payoffs are years away. Net stocks move to the Fed's tune, just like bonds." (John Rutledge, economist)

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