The Goldman Sachs technology M&A team, led by Sam Britton, has cashed in on its software focus and decades of experience to dominate 2019's biggest deals.Technologyread more
American small and medium-size companies that rely on China are scrambling to adjust their business plans in response to the escalating trade war.Traderead more
Here are the products that stand to be the most affected by China's new tariffs on $75 billion worth of U.S. goods.Marketsread more
The summit comes amid fears over a global economic slowdown, and U.S. tensions over trade allies, Iran and Russia.Politicsread more
The world's second biggest economy is past a point where it cannot ignore its enormous debt anymore, according to an analyst.China Economyread more
Carl Medlock used to work at Tesla. Now he's one of the few people in the U.S. that can fix the company's original Roadster electric vehicles.Technologyread more
Trump does have some powerful tools that would not require approval from U.S. Congress.Politicsread more
Stocks dropped after Donald Trump ordered that U.S. manufacturers find alternatives to their operations in China.US Marketsread more
As demand for lab monkeys continues to rise, U.S. scientists are reporting delays in research projects because they can't obtain enough animals, according to the National...Politicsread more
The European Union will respond in kind if the U.S. imposes tariffs on France over digital tax plan, EU chief Donald Tusk told G-7.Technologyread more
Trump said he will raise tariffs on $250 billion in Chinese goods to 30% and hike duties on another $300 billion in products to 15%.Politicsread more
Generous individuals are putting more and more of their dollars to work at their favorite causes.
Increasingly, they're using donor-advised funds to do it.
Account holders at Fidelity Charitable recommended $4 billion in grants during the first six months of 2019, an increase of nearly 50% compared to the prior year.
Meanwhile, Schwab Charitable said its donor-advised fund owners made more than $2.4 billion in grants over the 2019 fiscal year, ending June 30. That's a 33% increase compared to the prior year.
Donor-advised funds are accounts that individuals can open at a brokerage firm or a large foundation and make gifts of cash and other assets.
Though the fund isn't required to distribute grants to the charity right away, the donor receives an immediate income tax deduction for making the gift.
Any unspent assets in the account grow tax-free.
Popular recipients of grants included Feeding America, Planned Parenthood, Doctors Without Borders and the Salvation Army, Schwab Charitable found.
"Nonprofits have been smart around advancing their initiatives and causes," said Pam Norley, president of Fidelity Charitable.
She attributes the increase in grant activity to nonprofits' savvy about raising money and the sheer number of donor-advised fund accounts.
The generous grants arrive on the heels of a complicated year for charitable giving.
In 2018, individuals, foundations and corporations gave an estimated $427.81 billion to U.S. charities, according to Giving USA. Adjusted for inflation, that's a decline of 1.7% from the prior year.
Last year, donors faced two major obstacles: There was a stock market decline toward the end of 2018, and taxpayers were grappling with changes to U.S. tax law.
In particular, the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act roughly doubled the standard deduction, so individuals who may have itemized deductions in the past were less likely to do so for 2018.
This meant people who claimed the charitable giving deduction in previous years may have not been able to claim the break on their 2018 return.
Charitably inclined donors can save on taxes and still enjoy the feel-good factor of giving.
They just need to plan.
For starters, while cash might seem like the simplest thing to give to a non-profit, it's not the most tax-savvy way to donate.
Instead, consider making a gift of highly appreciated stock. "You get a deduction based on the fair market value," said Kim Laughton, president of Schwab Charitable.
Further, a direct gift of stock goes further for the charity, versus selling your asset and giving away cash.
That's because you'll incur capital gains taxes when you sell your shares.
Another strategy that's gaining traction is bunching your charitable giving — that is, lumping in at least two years' worth of gifts — to get a charitable deduction that's large enough to help you get over the threshold and itemize.
This way, you'll itemize deductions in one year and then take the standard deduction the following year.
"For clients who are raising families and have other savings needs, they might have $5,000 that they can give to charity," said Jeffrey Levine, CPA and director of financial planning at BluePrint Wealth Alliance in Garden City, New York.
"We're going to wait three years and let them give $15,000 in one shot, instead of $5,000 each year," he said.