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Saturday, December 31, 2011

Charitable Giving in Canada and the United States

Our chapter on civic culture notes that the United States ranks high among nations in charitable giving.  The Fraser Institute, a free-market Canadian think tank, reports:
“By comparing the share of tax filers making charitable donations and the share of income donated to charities across North American jurisdictions, our report reveals a significant generosity gap between Canadians and Americans,” said Charles Lammam, Fraser Institute senior policy analyst and co-author of the report.
[E]ven the most generous Canadians don’t come close to their American neighbours in terms of private charitable giving. Monetary generosity in the United States surpassed that of Canada, with 26.6 per cent of American tax filers donating to charity, compared to 23.0 per cent of Canadians.
Utah was by far the most generous jurisdiction in North America, with 33.4 per cent of tax filers donating 3.09 per cent of the total income earned in the state—nearly three-and-a-half times the share of aggregate income donated by Canada’s top province (0.89 per cent), Manitoba.
Maryland was second overall, with 40.8 per cent of residents donating 1.67 per cent of total income.
On a country-wide basis, Americans gave 1.32 per cent of their aggregate personal income to charity, more than double the 0.64 per cent that Canadians donated.
Had Canadians matched the generosity of their American neighbours by donating the same percentage of total income, Canadian charities would have received an extra $8.3 billion in private donations in 2009,” Lammam said.
Full report here.