Clients often have outsized positions due to appreciation and large pre-tax retirement accounts. They may be looking to reduce portfolio risk and protect gains now, while also aiming to reduce their future income tax burden.
Roth conversions and harvesting capital gains are two effective financial strategies that can achieve these goals; however, they accelerate income tax costs.
There are current tax consequences associated with each strategy, and the issue becomes whether to accelerate ordinary income, capital gains, or a combination thereof. Clients may struggle to choose the optimal balance between Roth conversions and harvesting capital gains.