A record of nearly $1.1 billion distributed to charities in the first half of 2014 through Fidelity Charitable donor-advised funds

More Donors Maximize Impact By Giving Private Assets

BOSTON, July 16, 2014 –Fidelity Charitable, an independent public charity with a donor-advised fund program, distributed a record of more than $1 billion to charities during the first half of the year. Fidelity Charitable distributed more than 250,000 donor-recommended grants totaling nearly $1.1 billion during the first six months of 2014, a 19 percent increase from the previous record of nearly $919 million distributed in the first half of 2013.

“We hear from our donors that they are feeling more confident as the economy continues to recover, and are reflecting that optimism in their charitable giving,” said Amy Danforth, president of Fidelity Charitable. “In addition, our donors are becoming more comfortable with the efficiency and benefits their donor-advised funds provide so they’re using their donor-advised funds for more of their giving.”

During the first half of 2014, grants recommended by Fidelity Charitable’s donors:

  • Supported more than 59,000 charities across all 50 states and some international charities.
  • Supported a wide range of charitable sectors with human services, religion and education ranking among the top sectors by grant volume and dollars.
  • Ranged from $50 to multi-million-dollar grants with an average grant size of $4,330.
  • Donors recommended 110 grants of $1 million or more totaling $241 million.

Donors also contributed nearly $1.2 billion to Fidelity Charitable, a 33 percent increase from the same period last year. The majority of contributions were in the form of appreciated assets. Donations of securities, such as stocks, bonds and mutual funds, accounted for 48 percent of contributions, and complex assets, such as private business interests and other non-publicly traded assets, accounted for nine percent of contributions.

The number of new charitable accounts established rose 41 percent over the first half of 2013 as Fidelity Charitable’s donor-advised fund program continued to experience rapid adoption.

Donors Focus on Impact: Use Donor-Advised Funds to Give More Private Assets

“Donors are focused on maximizing efficiency and impact; and that starts with how they fund their philanthropy,” said Danforth. “Donating private business interests can be a powerful way to give, conferring tax efficiencies that enable donors to give over 20 percent more to their charitable causes in some cases.”

In the first half of 2014, the contribution of complex assets more than doubled from the same period last year to over $100 million. The increase was driven by entrepreneurial baby boomers who are selling their companies to retire, and a rise in merger and acquisition deals1 that has more entrepreneurs and investors experiencing wealth events that can be significant.

Fidelity Charitable has a team of experts who specialize in helping donors and their advisors complete complex asset contributions while keeping the costs of the contribution low to maximize the amount of the charitable donation. By using a donor-advised fund to monetize private assets, donors are helping the charities the funds will ultimately support avoid the complication and overhead involved in liquidating the assets. Donors also can use the assets to fund donations to multiple charities rather than a single beneficiary.

2014 Fiscal Year Results

Fidelity Charitable also announced its 2014 fiscal year results today. During the fiscal year, which runs from July 1, 2013, through June 30, 2014, Fidelity Charitable distributed nearly $2.3 billion in grants on behalf of its donors, a 23 percent increase from the previous year, and donors contributed $3.9 billion to their donor-advised funds, an 8 percent increase.

1In the first half of 2014, the value of mergers and acquisitions in the United States rose to $694.6 billion, a 98.3 percent increase over the same period last year, according to Mergermarket.

About Fidelity Charitable

Fidelity Charitable is an independent public charity that has helped donors support more than 180,000 nonprofit organizations with nearly $17 billion in grants. Established in 1991, Fidelity Charitable launched the first national donor-advised fund program. The mission of the organization is to further the American tradition of philanthropy by providing programs that make charitable giving simple and effective. For more information about Fidelity Charitable, visit https://www.fidelitycharitable.org.

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