By Cristin Rigg, CFP® , CDFA™


Shifts in 2018 year-end giving patterns hint at possible 2019 behaviors

Multiple studies show that complex changes in year-end charitable giving behaviors in the United States affected nonprofits during the 2018 giving season. While it remains to be seen what year-end donations to nonprofits will look like in 2019, Harris Financial Advisors (“HFA”) continues to work closely with nonprofit leaders and investment committee members as this year’s giving season approaches.

In assessing last year’s charitable giving patterns, observers noted several shifts in the 2018 nonprofit donation landscape. Studies reported the number of U.S.-based donors, particularly middle-income earners, declined in 2018. Overall giving rose – led by the corporate sector – but remained around 1%, below an anticipated 3-5% expected increase.

Researchers, nonprofit leaders and financial analysts believe the 2017 Tax Cuts and Jobs Act and a late year stock market decline in 2018 likely influenced year-end giving patterns. They continue to observe U.S. donor behaviors in 2019 noting that, among other things, they expect to see larger but less frequent donations from individuals, a growing concentration of wealthy and corporate donors, and nonprofits’ increased reliance on social media to secure donations.

Harris Financial Advisors brings decades of experience to our work with nonprofit clients

HFA brings more than two decades of experience to advising our foundation, endowment and nonprofit clients. We have a long and successful history of working with nonprofit leadership, particularly investment committee members, to provide guidance on sustaining organizational financial well-being from year-to-year. Specifically, we:

  • Help nonprofit organizations prioritize their investment objectives
  • Ensure each nonprofit’s financial objectives align with their organization’s philanthropic goals
  • Assist our nonprofit clients in developing successful investment strategies

As the 2019 giving season gets underway, we will continue to help our nonprofit clients understand how changes in giving patterns may affect the future financial position of their organizations. Together we will develop forward-thinking investment strategies that account for potential changes in donor behaviors. Some factors we encourage our nonprofit clients to consider include:

  • How the 2017 tax law could continue to influence U.S.-based donations
  • What nonprofits can do to maximize their current donor contributions and improve marketing strategies to boost gifts
  • Whether corporations will continue to increase their engagement in philanthropy with year-end giving

While shifts in 2018 charitable giving behaviors are expected to continue during the 2019 giving season, Harris Financial Advisors provides year-round resources and perspectives to help nonprofits attain their fiscal goals as they work to positively impact their communities.

Contact Harris Financial Advisors today to discuss how we can help prepare you to maintain your nonprofit’s financial stability, and enable it to continue on a steady path toward growth in 2020.