Philanthropy in the US: Charitable Giving Sets Record in 2015

Charitable giving in the United States set a record last year: $373.25 billion. That’s according to the report “Giving USA 2016: The Annual Report on Philanthropy for the year 2015,” released in June.

It was the second consecutive year that philanthropic donations had set a record.

“That new peak in contributions is record-setting whether measured in current or inflation-adjusted dollars,” the report said. “In 2015, total giving grew 4.1 percent in current dollars (4.0 percent when adjusted for inflation) over 2014. The revised inflation-adjusted estimate for total giving in 2014 was $359.04 billion, with current-dollar growth of 7.8 percent, and an inflation-adjusted increase of 6.1 percent.”

The donations come from individuals, estates, foundations and corporations, and giving from all four sources increased in 2015:

  • Individual giving, $264.58 billion, increased 3.8 percent in current dollars over 2014.
  • Foundation giving, $58.46 billion, was 6.5 percent higher than 2014.
  • Charitable bequests, $31.76 billion, increased 2.1 percent over 2014.
  • Corporate giving, $18.45 billion, increased 3.9 percent over 2014 giving.

“Giving USA” is published by the Giving USA Foundation, a public service initiative of The Giving Institute. It is researched and written by the Indiana University Lilly Family School of Philanthropy.