The 501 S(c)ene

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2017 annual Giving USA Report released

Giving USA Report, nonprofit, giving, donationsThe Giving USA Foundation (a public service initiative of The Giving Institute) has released their 2017 annual Giving USA Report on Philanthropy in collaboration with The Indiana University Lilly Family School of Philanthropy. Using data from calendar year 2016, the Giving USA report compiles and analyzes data on charitable giving in the U.S in order to identify trends that can be useful to nonprofit organizations. The following is a summary of the sources of the $390.05 billion in charitable giving disclosed in the 2017 report:

(Numbers in billions of dollars and rounded)

  • $280.84 (72%) Individuals
  • $58.51 (15%) Foundations
  • $31.20 (8%) Bequests
  • $19.50 (5%) Corporations

Seventy-two percent of donations came from individual donors in 2016. This is a familiar statistic, as the giving from individual donors composed 71% in 2015 and 72% in 2014. In fact, very little changed in the overall mix of donor sources from 2015 to 2016. Bequests decreased from 9% to 8% of the total, and Foundations decreased from 16% to 15%. Corporations remained consistent at 5%. Giving USA notes that the total increase in charitable giving was 2.7% from 2015 to 2016, and this was primarily driven by an increase in donations by individuals. This translates to an increase of $16.8 billion, and builds on the increase of 4.1% from 2014 to 2015.

In addition to the breakdown of contribution sources, the Giving USA Report also highlighted some other interesting information:

  • Average annual donations made by U.S households reached $2,240 in 2016, in comparison to $2,124 in 2015. It is also estimated that giving by both itemizing and non-itemizing individuals increased by 4.0% and 3.4%, respectively.
  • The 3.5% increase in corporate giving is attributed to increases in GDP and corporate pre-tax profits of 3.0% and 2.7%, respectively.
  • The nonprofit categories seeing the highest increases in giving are education, public-society benefit, environmental and animal organizations. Arts, culture, and humanities organizations and international affairs organizations have seen the highest growth over the last four years.

More information regarding the Giving Institute and the Giving USA report can be found here. A two page summary of the highlights from the full report can also be obtained at no cost on the Giving USA website.

Kristian A. Haralson, MSA