Late last night, the House of Representatives approved the Tax Relief, Unemployment Insurance Reauthorization, and Job Creation Act of 2010. The Senate has already approved the Act and the President is expected to sign the Bill into law.

The Bill is almost all good news for taxpayers. The only bad news is that the tax reductions will only last through the end of 2012.

After 9½ years of waiting for changes to the estate and gift tax laws, we start a new two year waiting period. I wonder if there will ever again be a Bill which “permanently” reduces taxes without a sunset after some period of years.

There are several year-end planning opportunities that you can now take advantage of without worrying about whether this Bill will be enacted. Hats off to Congress for giving us two full weeks to plan during the holiday season.

If you have been waiting on selling depreciated stocks to harvest losses in 2010, you might as well pull the trigger because the losses will not be more valuable in 2011 than they are in 2010. Your broker will thank you for acting before Christmas rather than after Christmas.