Schwab Charitable™, one of the largest national providers of donor-advised funds and other philanthropic services, reported a record $2.2 billion in grants to 86,500 charities in 2018, representing a 35% increase from the previous year. Schwab Charitable donors recommended more than 487,000 grants, up 32% from 2017. Feeding America, Planned Parenthood, Doctors Without Borders, Salvation Army, and Campus Crusade for Christ were the most widely supported grant recipients last year.
Through the end of 2018, Schwab Charitable donors continued to contribute to their donor-advised fund accounts and recommend grants to their favorite charities. Despite concerns over the potential impact of tax reform and the year-end market correction, donors gave at historic levels. Just in the last three months of the year, donors recommended more than 210,600 grants totaling $807 million, up from 163,600 grants totaling $655 million in Q4 2017.
Donors maximize their charitable impact with tax efficient non–cash donations
More than two-thirds (67%) of contributions to Schwab Charitable accounts were in the form of non-cash assets last year. The most popular assets contributed in 2018 included publicly-traded securities, restricted stock, real estate and privately held business interests.
Some donors also opted to concentrate, or “bunch,” their charitable contributions in 2018 by donating a few years of gifts to their donor-advised funds. Concentrating charitable contributions can allow donors to maximize their tax benefits by giving enough to make it advantageous to itemize deductions every few years and then benefit from taking the new higher standard deduction in other years.