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Robin, I transferred appreciated stocks to several

Hi Robin, I transferred appreciated...
Hi Robin, I transferred appreciated stocks to several non-profits as charitable contributions in 2017. I have the cost basis for the stocks, and of course, their value when the stocks were transferred. Do I also need the dates on which the stocks were acquired? (I am hoping not because my brokerage firm does not provide that info in their statements.) If I do have to provide the dates on which the stocks were acquired, I presume it would be best to give the most RECENT shares, since I will avoid tax on these shares, and that way I possibly avoid a higher-taxed short-term gain rather than a lower-taxed long-term gain. Is that correct? Thank you!
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3/15/2018
taxmanrog
taxmanrog, Certified Public Accountant (CPA)
Category: Tax
Satisfied Customers: 1,206
Experience: Licensed CPA, MA, MST with 31 years' experience. Teach Accounting and Tax courses at Masters level.
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Welcome to Just Answer! Thank you for giving me the opportunity to assist you! I will do my best to help!

The expert you requested is not online now, so with your permission, I would like to answer this question. I am a CPA who has been practicing tax for over 33 years. I also teach taxation and accounting at the Master's level for a national university, and am a tax manager for a large national CPA firm.

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When you contribute stock, you can deduct the fair market value (FMV) of the shares. It is not as simple as looking at the closing price If there is an active market for the contributed stocks or bonds on a stock exchange, in an over-the-counter market, or elsewhere, the FMV of each share or bond is the average price between the highest and lowest quoted selling prices on the valuation date.

You do not have to list the date acquired. You can simply list "various" on the Form 8283 (the form that must be filled out for an contributions of non-cash items valued at $500 or more).

As far as the shares to gift, I would recommend contribution of the shares with the lowest cost. In that way, you will have a lower gain on any shares that you retain to sell at a future date. Depending on when you may want to sell the shares you retain, you also might consider contributing the newest shares first, so as to avoid the short-term capital gain treatment that you mention. However, depending on the gain you have, I have usually seen that the lower cost shares are the best ones to contribute.

I hope this answers your question. If you have any more, please feel free to ask and I will be happy to answer.

Thanks! Have a great week!

Roger

taxmanrog
taxmanrog, Certified Public Accountant (CPA)
Category: Tax
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Experience: Licensed CPA, MA, MST with 31 years' experience. Teach Accounting and Tax courses at Masters level.
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