New York, NY -- November 5, 2014. According to the new edition of Foundation Center's Key Facts on U.S. Foundations, the country's 86,192 foundations held $715 billion in assets and distributed a record $52 billion in 2012. This annual research study estimates 2013 giving at $54.7 billion and the outlook for 2014 is for growth to continue ahead of inflation, with independent and family foundations growing at a higher rate than other types of foundations.

"Giving by the nation's foundations has surpassed previous record levels," said Steven Lawrence, Foundation Center's director of research and author of the report. "While some endowments are still recovering from the Great Recession, strong stock market performance has boosted the assets of many and will undoubtedly encourage more individuals to create foundations."

Among the key findings in the report:

  • In 2012, New York State led the nation in overall foundation giving ($8.7 billion).
  • California organizations ranked first in the amount of grant dollars received from the largest U.S. foundations ($2.4 billion).
  • The Switzerland-based World Health Organization was the top recipient of international grant dollars in 2012.

Foundation Center is the leading source of information about philanthropy worldwide, meeting the need for information on trends in the field and informing decision making at social sector organizations. Key Facts on U.S. Foundations is the primary publication documenting the overall size of the U.S. foundation community and providing perspective on the giving priorities of the nation's largest foundations.

The comprehensive data set used for the analysis in Key Facts on U.S. Foundations is available for deeper exploration at Foundation Stats, an online tool that allows anyone to generate thousands of custom tables and charts on the size, scope, and giving priorities of U.S. foundations.

Key Facts on U.S. Foundations is accessible at no charge at the Gain Knowledge area of Foundation Center's website. To receive future updates on Foundation Center news, sign up here.


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About Foundation Center
Established in 1956, Foundation Center is the leading source of information about philanthropy worldwide. Through data, analysis, and training, it connects people who want to change the world to the resources they need to succeed. Foundation Center maintains the most comprehensive database on U.S. and, increasingly, global grantmakers and their grants -- a robust, accessible knowledge bank for the sector. It also operates research, education, and training programs designed to advance knowledge of philanthropy at every level. Thousands of people visit Foundation Center's website each day and are served in its five regional library/learning centers and its network of more than 470 funding information centers located in public libraries, community foundations, and educational institutions nationwide and around the world. For more information, please visit or call (212) 620-4230.

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