A:

Stocks, bonds or any other securities can be transferred as gifts. Giving the gift of stock also has benefits for the giver. If the stock has appreciated in value, the holder can avoid paying the capital gains tax by giving it as a gift. There are two methods in transferring the ownership of a stock, which depend on how it is currently being held.

If the stock is being held in certificate form, then transferring the physical stock will be required. The owner must endorse the stock by signing it in presence of a guarantor, which can be their bank or broker. There may also be a form on the back of the certificate, which relate to the transferring of ownership. After the certificate is filled out and signed, it will be rendered non-negotiable and become transferable. There are also websites, like Oneshare.com, who specifically sell shares of stock that you can gift to people.

Often though, there will not be a physical copy of the stock, as many investors own the electronic version, which stored in a brokerage account. To gift his stock, the owner should gather the brokerage account information of the party they are gifting. The next step is to contact the gifter's broker, pass on the new account information, and order the electronic transfer to the other party.

For more information on stock transfers, read How Does Someone Actually Transact Securities?

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