It’s The Economy…..

The phrase made famous during the 1992 Presidential campaign; perhaps it will take center stage again this Fall. In the meantime, the American economic climate appears cloudy. As those involved in the world of philanthropy, we know this could have a significant downward effect on both donations and investment income for our organizations. In an Op-Ed in last week’s Forward, Jeffrey Solomon, the creative and insightful President of the Andrea and Charles Bronfman Phlanthropies, wrote ‘Agencies Must Gird themselves For A Recession‘ reflecting on the potential impacts of a “full-blown recession…on Jewish organizational life.”

“As Americans increasingly wonder whether the nation will fall into a full-blown recession, many of us are considering the deleterious effect such a development would have on Jewish organizational life. While the complex and caring American Jewish community has survived numerous economic cycles, this time around there are some significant differences.

First, non-profit organizations — which had traditionally been most conservative in their investment strategies — have increasingly in recent years looked toward alternative investments, believing that these can hedge against the volatility of the markets. This occurs as service pressures mount and fixed instruments are viewed as providing lower long-term return than do equities.”

click here to continue reading this must read column; for a related post see, Changing Strategy For A Downturn

(my thanks to R.Wexler for calling attention to Jeffrey Solomon’s post)