Causes Favored by U.S. Elites See Good Holiday Tithings: Economy – Bloomberg.
The favored charities of the wealthy are gaining in share in the philanthropic economy,” a trend that is symptomatic of wealth inequality, said Rob Reich, associate professor of political science at Stanford University in California. “The total amount of money given away by the very wealthy is going up, not because they’re giving away a greater share of their income,” he said, but because “their total income and wealth itself has grown.”
Donations as a percentage of GDP have held near 2 percent since the 1990s, with the annual record reaching $349.5 billion in 2007, according to data from Giving USA, a public-service initiative that monitors charitable activity.
The boost in individual giving last year came from gifts of $80 million or more, indicating that the wealthy’s total share of the philanthropic pie has expanded.
“The gains and losses in giving are increasingly driven by a smaller percentage of the population,” said Patrick Rooney, associate dean for academic affairs and research at the Indiana University Lilly Family School of Philanthropy in Indianapolis, which wrote the report.