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Financial Planning > Charitable Giving > Donor Advised Funds

Schwab DAF Clients Gave $1.2 Billion to 56,000 Charities in FY2016

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Schwab Charitable distributed $1.2 billion in charitable grants on behalf of its donor-advised fund account holders in fiscal year 2016, ended June 30.

This was the second consecutive year that total grants exceeded $1 billion, Schwab said in its annual report released Monday. The DAF sponsor has facilitated some $6.6 billion in grants since it hung out its shingle in 1999.

According to the report, total grants from Schwab accounts rose by 12%, despite an up-and-down year for stock markets and investments, and scheduled/recurring grants increased by 50% year over year.

Donors supported more than 56,000 charities in fiscal 2016. Twenty-eight percent of grants went to the health and human services sector, 26% to religion and 16% to education, with small contributions going to social services and benefits; arts, culture and humanities; environmental issues and animal welfare; and international and foreign affairs.

The top five grant recipients were Feeding America, Doctors Without Borders, The Salvation Army, United Way and Habitat for Humanity.

Sixty-two percent of donors recommended grants to nonprofits in their home states, representing 57% in dollar value of total grants. California led with 18% of grants, followed by New York with 10%.

Schwab noted that 65% its donors in a 2015 poll said they gave more to charity because they had a DAF account. According to the annual report, DAF clients contributed $1.9 billion to their accounts in fiscal 2016–41% in cash and 59% in non-cash assets.

Schwab said it simplifies contributions of appreciated non-cash assets and investments by handling liquidation and relieving both donors and recipient charities of the attendant administrative burden. In fiscal 2016, it eliminated basic consulting and processing fees for the most common types of complex assets donated to charity, such as restricted stock, real estate and alternative investment funds.

The report said 79% of Schwab Charitable account assets have an associated professional investment advisor, and 28% of advisors make grants on behalf of clients. The median professionally managed account size is $540,000, while the median DAF account size is $17,000.

Advisory firms whose clients have Schwab DAF accounts come in all sizes:

• 25% have less than $100 million in assets under management.

• 23%: $100 million to $250 million.

• 16%: $250 million to $500 million.

• 9%: $500 million to $750 million.

• 5%: $750 million to $1 billion.

• 22%: more than $1 billion.

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