by Joseph Coletti
Senior Fellow, Fiscal Studies, John Locke Foundation
Nonprofit organizations, like retailers, earn a significant portion of their revenue for a year between Thanksgiving and New Year’s. This was the case even before Giving Tuesday. What better time to consider why people give in the first place?
Giving USA estimates that tax reform’s change in the standard deduction could lead 27 million fewer people to give and result in a five percent reduction in charitable contributions from the $410 billion given in 2017. In recent years, fewer people have made charitable contributions, but those who donate are giving more.
Clearly there is more to giving than the marginal price from taxes. Austin Detwiler at Philanthropy Daily suggests, “People don’t give money away for a tax break, but because they are committed to causes.”