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If you have capital gains to offset, I'd always say it's a no-regrets move to take as big a capital loss as you have in Cisco. If you want to hold your position in CSCO, you can do one of two things, depending on your short-term time horizon:

(1) Sell your position in CSCO and re-buy it after 30 days.
(2) Buy an equal number of shares as you currently own in CSCO, and sell your current shares in 30 days to realize the loss (this requires some cash and/or liquidity, but note that you should be able to borrow the money, at today's low rates, and deduct the interest paid from your taxes (assuming it doesn't exceed your total investment income in 2002)).

I won't advocate which is better between 1 & 2, as I think short-term forecasting is very difficult, to say the least. But I wanted to note that you do have the option of taking either up- or downside risk over the 30 days. And you may want to spread your sales out over time to mitigate against short-term price movements.

I followed both options last year, taking losses in some of my large-cap tech holdings (e.g., LU, SUNW, CSCO, ORCL, YHOO) to offset gains realized elsewhere. With a couple exceptions (in which I decided not to re-buy), I hold the same positions today that I held then, and I didn't lose on any of these (but you can -- like the Rule Breaker portfolio when taking its tax loss on HGSI).

IMPORTANT NOTE: If you don't have/expect enough capital gains to offset the overall capital loss that you will realize in CSCO, don't sell any more than you'll be able to offset, unless you have a new opinion of CSCO (I'd go to that message board for advice on that stock). There's no point in loaning the government your money (indeed, for that reason, many people hold off on realizing these losses until the fall).
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