Why charitable donations are seeing an uptick in 2013

  • Published: November 14, 2013
  • Runtime: 2:41
Kim Laughton, the president of Schwab Charitable, explains why clients are increasing their charitable giving in 2013 for reasons that go beyond philanthropy.

Exclusive coverage of Charles Schwab's IMPACT 2013 conference from November 10-13 in Washington, D.C.

2013 is looking to be a really good year for giving, even better than 2012, which was also a great year and that's for a few different reasons. The first is that the stock markets are robust. They're increasing. They're doubled the levels. They were back in 2009. So, people have a lot of appreciated assets in their portfolio. It makes them more secure and many of those appreciated assets make great charitable gifts because they don't have to pay capital gains when you give things to charity. That's reason number one. Secondly, many clients have seen their income tax or capital gains tax rates go higher, those in the higher tax brackets and they're looking for reasons to offset those taxes, ways to get deductions. Charitable deductions are a wonderful way to be able to give a favorite cause while also offsetting taxes. There's also been a renewal of the 2013 charitable rollover stipulation, which allows those retirees who are over 70 and a half to take their requirement on distribution and give it charity rather than be taxed on it and so that's gonna be something that's gonna really be helpful for charitable giving. And then overall, clients just tend to prefer an air of certainty versus uncertainty and so those who are concerned about future tax legislation and how that might change the charitable deduction are thinking about giving now instead of later. So, we're thinking that 2013 is going to be a great year to give. That's why in charitable, our volumes are already 30% and 40% higher than they were at the same time last year and so it looks to be a really, really, really robust year. It is important that advisers just ask the questions of their clients about charitable giving. There's nothing to be afraid of. Most clients we find are really open to that conversation. It can be as simple as what types of charities do you like to support, where do you think you'll-- what charities will you support in the future, are you interested in offsetting your taxes with the gift to charity. These are great questions to ask a new client. They're also great questions to ask a client during the quarterly review and certainly for the end of the year when you have some idea as to what their tax situation might be. Giving to charity in establishing a personal legacy is one of the most important things for clients next to taking care of their children and having them be happy, healthy, and self-sufficient. Most clients care on most-- most about leaving a positive legacy for themselves. So by asking questions around their giving and what their intense are for giving, you're opening up really important conversations that can really deepen the relationship you have with your client.

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