Report: U.S. Charitable Giving Projected to Grow 4.8 Percent in 2015, 4.9 Percent in 2016
(Press release, Feb. 24, 2015) — Charitable giving in the United States is expected to grow by 4.8 percent in 2015 and by an additional 4.9 percent in 2016, according to The Philanthropy Outlook, a new report researched and written by the Indiana University Lilly Family School of Philanthropy. The report is presented by Marts & Lundy, a leading fundraising and philanthropy consulting firm. Projected rates of change are in 2013 inflation-adjusted dollars.
The outlook projects that the expected growth of total giving in each of those years will exceed the estimated annualized average rate of growth in total giving in the years following the Great Recession (3.1 percent) and the estimated long-term average for the 40-year trend in total giving for 1973-2013 (3.8 percent).
The nonprofit sector has a significant impact on U.S. society and the economy. Approximately 1.4 million nonprofits provide 11 percent of U.S. jobs and 9 percent of total wages. Americans gave an estimated $335.17 billion — or 2 percent of U.S. GDP — to charity in 2013, according to Giving USA 2014. Yet few resources exist for anticipating and planning for the future of giving.
“Despite the scope and impact of the nonprofit sector, it lacks the type of myriad, reliable resources that business and government have long used to understand the outlook for their sectors. Given that many nonprofits are hugely dependent on private contributions, the need for accurate projections for charitable giving is especially great,” said John M. Cash, Ph.D., chair of the board of directors and senior consultant and principal at Marts & Lundy. “The Philanthropy Outlook is based on a carefully constructed econometric model grounded in serious academic research. It is a key new planning tool for the nonprofit sector.”
The Philanthropy Outlook provides data for predicted year-to-year growth rates in U.S. philanthropy for 2015 and 2016, including overall giving and giving by individuals/households, foundations, estates and corporations. It includes context and explanations of the economic factors and conditions that will significantly influence the predicted changes in giving. It will be updated annually.