Amid concerns about the global economy, philanthropy among the ultra-rich slowed in 2014 from a year earlier, but still peaked at an all-time high, according to a recent report by Wealth-X and Arton Capital.
Their "Major Giving Index," which tracks giving trends among individuals with a net worth of $30 million or more, finds that charitable giving increased 25% since 2004. In 2014, the index increased 6.4% year-over-year, compared with 36.6% in 2013, likely due to economic uncertainty. Of the 211,000 rich individuals tracked by Wealth-X, total giving clocked in at $112 billion last year.
How much did they give?
On average, the ultra-rich donated or pledged just over $530,000 per person to charity in 2014. Among all individuals worth $30 million or more, 65% will donate $1 million or more during their lifetimes, with the typical philanthropist giving much more -- $28.7 million.
American billionaires donate more than any other rich segment of the population, contributing an average of $179.5 million during their lifetimes. But when looking at the total group of philanthropists worth $30 million or more, the U.K. beats out the U.S. as the most generous, based on the value of donations as a percentage of net worth.
The rich value education
The rich feel strongly about higher education -- the recipient of the majority of gifts in 2014 -- with an average amount of $11.8 million per donor. They gave an additional average of $4.1 million to other educational causes. The next most popular charitable cause was health, which received an average of $7 million per donor.
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