Why You Should Give Stocks As Gifts

Don’t even think about Zhu Zhu hunting until you’ve considered giving stocks this year.

Better Investing

This holiday season, you’ll probably be buying a gift for at least one child. And while a Zhu Zhu might sound like a lot of fun (robotic hamster… who can resist?), it’ll probably be lining the closet floor this time next year. So while it may not be the most requested gift, a few shares of stock will certainly may quite potentially be around longer than the average Furby.

But stocks aren’t as fun as robots

Of course not. But a stock is an investment in the future and unless you’re Honda, robots aren’t. Besides, stocks can always be made to sound fun… How about a share of Disney (DIS)? As of writing this, they’re trading for about $30, and you’ll have a great chance to explain investing when you tell the child they now OWN a part of their favorite company. Disney not quite right? Microsoft (MSFT) makes the XBOX, Sony (SNE) makes the Playstation and Nintendo (NTDOY) makes the Wii. There’s no shortage of publicly traded companies pushing products on children and with the market pretty far down, all should make great long-term investments.

And you can’t put a stock under the tree

Nowadays, stocks are completely electronic, which can take some of the fun out of gift wrapping. But while you can’t give a real stock certificate like you could in the olden days, you can always make your own. Or, build an online portfolio at a site like MSN Money or Yahoo! Finance, then give the login in a card as the gift. Kids are much more computer literate now, and they might even enjoy watching their investment go up and down with mommy and daddy’s moods.

Ok, ok, what now?

If you don’t already have an investment account, you can open one easily online. Sites like E*TRADE, TD AMERITRADE or Scottrade… usually the word “trade” is involved somehow… all make good options. Search around a look for the one with the lowest brokerage and trade fees.

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  • Mike

    http://www.oneshare.com/ sells real stock certificates from many companies, including all the ones you mentioned. The Disney stock looks like a very nice present. They will even frame and engrave it. Not cheap, but will fit under a tree. Disclaimer: I’ve never bought anything from this company or work for them. Just thought you might be interested in a source for your gift idea.

  • Dave Radetsky

    How irresponsible is this advice! We have a market that has taken a nosedive and is slowly recovering. But we have a bigger problem that this author ignores and that is the HUGE debt this government has run up that is absolutely impossible to pay. We are headed down a path that, contrary to what you may want to believe, is looking at high inflation and devaluation of the dollar. We have a government destroying jobs and companies. We have a government whose plans with healthcare and cap and trade will destroy our economy and you have the gall to recommend investing in stocks? Are you nuts? People should be taking every cent they have and paying off debts. When all debts are paid they should be careful to invest in very secure instruments and tangibles until this shakes out, if it ever does. The world has never had a nation with so much debt or such a foolish method for dealing with it’s financial problems (No one has yet to show how you get out of debt by going further into debt. If that worked why wouldn’t we be recommending that every single person go into as much debt as possible?). You should be ashamed of yourselves for publishing such irresponsible advice.

  • Richard

    Dave, lighten up, Dude. This article is based on giving a stock cetificate to kids. By the time they have grown up the financial crunch that we are in should be over. Besides, Disney, Micosoft and Nintendo aren’t going bankrupt any time soon.

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