When it comes to the buying and giving of presents, some of us are better at it than others. Buying a real knock-out gift requires some empathetic thinking about the giftee, and some general inspiration to boot. To be honest, some of us just don’t have it in us, but that doesn’t mean our gifts can’t be impactful. If you can’t search through the world of retail for a gift that’ll speak straight to your loved one’s soul, there are some great financial products that will not go unappreciated. Here are 4.

  1. Government Bonds. It might seem old-fashioned, but government bonds printed on colorful bills of paper are a great gift, especially for the financially unsophisticated or very young. Bonds appreciate slowly, but there is almost no risk that they’ll ever lose value. They’re perfect for a child, a college student, or anyone who would appreciate having some extra cash down the road. Available in many denominations, bonds can be stuffed into an envelope but they’re still exciting to unwrap.
  1. Life Insurance. You’ve got to be careful about this one lest it be taken the wrong way. Life insurance is something that many people should have, but which they fail to actually buy. If you have someone in your family who would like to have life insurance and the peace of mind it brings, but who doesn’t feel they can afford it, this can be a very good gift. Term life insurance quotes are likely more affordable than you realize, so check it out before the holidays are upon us.
  1. Stocks. Unwrapping a paper that signifies the ownership of stocks isn’t the same as opening up a new iPod, but they’ll likely be worth a lot more down the line. Stocks are an investment in someone’s future. If you are a skilled investor already, giving stocks as a gift really is an act that the receiver could not do for themselves (the choosing of a great portfolio, that is). This gift will certainly keep on giving, and may inspire the giftee to take up investment as a hobby or more.
  1. Roth IRA. A Roth IRA is a great gift to give to a young person, though nobody will be sorry they received one, no matter their age. As you know, Roth IRAs are tax-protected investment accounts meant to help the average person comfortably retire later in life. If you are able to give your giftee an IRA filled with its annual maximum contribution, that’s a great gift indeed. But even if you fill it up just a little bit, it’s a very practical gift that they will hopefully continue to fill up as they move through their life and career.
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Giving the gift of money is never a dud. If none of these work for you, you could also just give cash! Whatever you choose, these gifts are the kind of presents that don’t lose their luster after a single day of use. They have great utility in your giftee’s future life, so choose them well and give generously!