This update summarizes recent noteworthy additions and updates at As regular visitors at our website know, we keep our content promptly updated for all developments affecting stock options, restricted stock/RSUs, ESPPs, and the related taxation, financial planning, and securities law. Along with the items below, you can also see a full list of the additions and updates that we made at during the second quarter of 2014.

Engaging New Videos On Restricted Stock And RSUs

Several lively videos at serve as helpful gateways into our detailed educational materials on equity compensation. Our earliest videos include our popular animated presentation on tax-return reporting for stock sales and our concise guide to the basics of restricted stock and RSUs. Recently we added two more professionally produced videos on restricted stock and RSUs:

You can watch these and other videos at or at our YouTube channel. We welcome your comments on the videos, which in time will be joined by others on ESPPs and stock options. As with all of our educational content and tools, the videos can be licensed and customized by your company.

Podcasts With Expert Commentaries From Contributing Authors offers podcasts on many topics in equity compensation. Adding to our audio recordings on the basics of equity comp, we have begun a series of podcast interviews with some of our expert contributing authors on a variety of subjects, including key concepts in financial planning.

  • Why Restricted Stock And RSUs Are A Good Deal. Compensation expert Richard Friedman explains what makes restricted stock and restricted stock units valuable forms of equity compensation. This audio recording is a companion to Mr. Friedman's article on this topic in the Restricted Stock section of, where he also has articles on financial and tax planning for restricted stock and RSUs.
  • Your Company Stock: The Importance Of Diversification. In a lively interview, CFP Laura Tanner shares her wisdom on investment diversification for employees with holdings of company stock. This audio recording is a companion to Ms. Tanner's article on diversification at
  • Financial Planning For Stock Compensation. CFP Alan Ungar gives guidance on choosing the optimal time to exercise stock options and expresses his point of view on what employees should do with shares acquired from restricted stock/RSU vesting. This audio recording is a companion to Mr. Ungar's article series on option exercise strategies at
  • College Funding With Stock Compensation. In this interview, college-funding advisor Troy Onink explains strategies for the use of stock options, restricted stock/RSUs, and other equity awards to pay for the ever-increasing costs of higher education. This audio recording is a companion to Mr. Onink's article series in the College Funding section at

This quartet of podcasts is just the start of a long-running series of author interviews that we plan to publish in the coming months and years.

Updates Include Equity Comp Trends Shown By Surveys

Our editorial team continually pursues hard-to-find survey data showing the latest corporate trends in equity compensation. We have updated our FAQs and articles to cite current survey results, in which we have encountered some noteworthy developments. After many years of catching up on stock options, restricted stock and restricted stock units (RSUs) are now the most commonly used types of equity award. Performance shares too are more widespread than ever before. Shifts have occurred in the reasons why companies grant equity awards and in grant guidelines, eligibility, and vesting schedules. For data on current equity award practices, see our detailed FAQ citing results from surveys and other research by various organizations and consulting firms. See also our article series on trends in all types of grant practices and specific grant features. Commonly occurring goals and metrics for performance share plans, along with other features of these awards, are shown in another FAQ.

Employees With Company Stock In Foreign Accounts Face Tightened Reporting Rules

United States citizens and resident aliens are taxable on their worldwide income. The related IRS reporting rules are complicated, and mistakes can lead to costly penalties. The IRS has launched an aggressive initiative to identify taxpayers with unreported foreign income and/or assets in foreign financial institutions. In a new article at, compensation and tax expert Richard Friedman presents the rules and related issues of IRS reporting for assets and income that a US employee may hold in a foreign financial account—including those acquired through stock options, restricted stock, RSUs, or other equity awards. The article, International Equity Awards And Company Stock: The Confusing World Of IRS Reporting For Overseas Assets And Income, is available in our section Financial Planning: High Net Worth.

Game-Changing Court Decision On Noncompetes In Stock Grant Agreements

Your stock grant agreement can have a provision that will not only claw back your gains if you leave to work for a competitor but also restrain you from taking a job at that company. These types of provisions, called restrictive covenants, can lurk in grant agreements for stock options, restricted stock, and performance shares. For details about a significant new court case involving restrictive covenants, along with an analysis of its implications, see a new article about at

Expertise On Planning For Pre-IPO Equity Comp

In the newest installment of our Stockbrokers' Secrets series, our pseudonymous financial advisor W.E.B. Bantling provides a pep talk about smart planning for pre-IPO stock options, restricted stock, or RSUs when the company goes public. At the time of the IPO, when the company finally pours long-awaited liquidity into those grants, planning considerations must be carefully weighed. In his new article, Stockbrokers' Secrets: Financial Planning For Equity Compensation At IPO Companies, the author emphasizes five planning points that may help to manage employee expectations in an IPO situation. The article is available in our section Pre-IPO: Going Public. Other popular articles in the series cover diversification, retirement planning, and restricted stock/RSUs.

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