Advancement Services Report

Provided as a service of Bentz Whaley Flessner

Thursday, November 29, 2007

IRS To Closely Scrutinize Charitable Non-Cash Giving

During the first nine months of 2006, donors claimed $1.8 billion in non-cash giving that lacked the proper documentation. In response to this, and new stringent laws regarding the deduction of property, the IRS will carefully scrutinize deductions for non-cash gifts claimed on tax returns according to an article by Karen Hube in Barrons.

Make sure you provide your donors the proper IRS documentation for all non-cash gifts, and you also may want to check to be sure if you received receipts for items that you may have donated to Goodwill or your church auction.

Read the full article here.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

The Greatest Givers

BusinessWeek has launched a special report on individual and corporate philanthropy in the U.S. The report includes articles on "The Most Elite Club in the World," "The 50 Most Generous Philanthropists," "The Greatest Givers," and "How Companies Dig Deep," among others.

Access the full report here.

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Goldman Sachs Starts Drive to Build Philanthropy Fund

"On the back of record profit so far this year, Goldman Sachs, the global investment bank, is starting a donor-driven philanthropy fund that aims to reach $1 billion over the next few years..."

Read more of this 11.21.07 New York Times article by Jenny Anderson.

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Monday, November 19, 2007

50 Women to Watch in 2007

New faces at the top - a pipeline filled with fast-rising women - offer hope for the future.

  • - Sortable list
  • - Video series
  • - Podcasts

View this Wall Street Journal report.

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Hedge Funds Bounce Back in a Big Way

"During the summer, hedge funds were back on their heels. Some big names closed down, others were startled by sudden losses and some investors questioned whether juicy opportunities were a thing of the past. Now, with notable exceptions, hedge funds are storming back - and pulling in more money than ever from investors."

Read more of this 11.19.07 Wall Street Journal by Gregory Zuckerman.


Wall Street Plans $38 Billion of Bonuses as Shareholders Lose

Bloomberg reports that shareholders in the securities industry are having their worst year since 2002, losing $74 billion of their equity. That won't prevent Wall Street from paying record bonuses, totaling almost $38 billion.

Read the full 11.19.07 Bloomberg article by Christine Harper.

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Thursday, November 15, 2007

IRS Moves to Weed Out Deadwood Charities

Donors should get a much clearer picture of how secular charities handle their money, and which charities are legitimate, due to new rules imposed by Congress. Now, even the tiniest nonprofit, like garden clubs with a few hundred dollars of income a year, must file simple disclosure statements online with the IRS.

Under the new law, the Pension Protection Act of 2006, any nonprofit (except virtually all religious organizations) that fails to file within three years will automatically lose its tax exemption, said Lois G. Lerner, the IRS's director of exempt organizations.

Read more of this 11.12.07 New York Times article by David Cay Johnston.

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To Tax or Not to Tax Nonprofits? Cities Ask the Billion-Dollar Question

Despite a long tradition of waiving taxes for charitable nonprofit groups, communities are feeling more pressure to eliminate property-tax exemptions. As communities struggle over diminishing revenue, whispers to eliminate tax breaks have grown louder...

Read more of this 11.12.07 article from the New York Times by Terry Schwadron.

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My Network, My Cause

The amounts raised online are relatively small. But they are increasing rapidly, paralleling the expansion of social networks.

Read this 11.12.07 New York Times article by Alan Krauss.

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Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Wading Into Web 2.0

From the Chronicle of Higher Education...

Over at ACRLog, Steven Bell flags "Sharing, Privacy and Trust in Our Networked World," a new report released by the OCLC Online Computer Library Center. The report - drawn from surveys of American librarians and library patrons in six nations - should provide plenty of grist for librarians as they debate how their institutions should make use of Web 2.0 tools and other new social media.

Read more.

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Monday, November 12, 2007

Banks to Share Platform for 144a Trades

By Lynn Cowen

A dozen Wall Street firms have decided to drop their competing trading systems for the unregistered securities known as 144a offerings and cooperate on a single platform operated by Nasdaq Stock Market Inc.

The decision, expected to be announced today, will revamp Nasdaq's Portal system, using some of the technology the investment banks have incorporated in their own systems. The result of nearly two months of negotiations, the new trading platform should be operational in the first quarter.

Read more of this 11.12.07 Wall Street Journal article.


Friday, November 9, 2007

Mr. Gates Queries His Peers

The Gates Foundation backs survey of wealthiest to boost giving. The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation is co-funding a study that is believed to be the largest and broadest survey of the American rich ever conducted. The questions will target American households worth $25 million or more, and the study aims to have at least 1,000 respondents -- a massive sample size for people of such a high net-worth level.

Read this 11.09.07 "Wealth Report" article by Robert Frank from the Wall Street Journal.

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Donors Harvest Tax Benefits of Hot Stocks

This Wall Street Journal article explores how the market's rise has spurred many to give shares to charities. More people are giving stock to charity in lieu of cash. Here's what author Tom Herman urges donors to consider the following.

  • - Rising markets have pushed up the value of many securities.
  • - Stock gifts net a tax deduction and spare you paying capital-gains tax.
  • - For the best tax result, donate shares owned for more than a year.

Read the full 11.07.07 Wall Street Journal article by Tom Herman.

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Nonprofits' Data Breached Yet Again In Software Attack

Here is an article regarding a data breach at is the second software vendor to nonprofits this week to announce a data breach.

Read this 11.08.07 article from The NonProfit Times.

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Thursday, November 8, 2007

Goldman Pay Tops Bear Stearns's Slumping Market Value

Goldman Sachs set aside $16.9 billion to pay salaries, benefits, and bonuses, according to the company's third-quarter earnings report. This is enough to buy Bear Stearns Cos., which is the stock market values at $14.7 billion. reports that "the figures demonstrate how the industry's fortunes diverged this year during the collapse of the subprime mortgage market and a credit-market contraction that saddled the biggest lenders and brokerages with at least $40 billion of writedowns and losses."

Read more of this 11.07.07 Bloomberg article.

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WSJ article: Bonus Pain Is Dish Still Served Bold

"Two compensation experts are set to release projections for bonus payments this year on Wall Street, and the numbers aren't pretty. One executive-search company, Options Group, projects bonuses will decrease 5% to 10% from last year, the first overall drop in five years.

Compensation consultant Johnson Associates has a rosier view, saying Wall Street bonuses will be flat, thanks to a relatively strong stock market and big profit gains in the first half of the year."

Read more of this 11.07.07 Wall Street Journal article by Aaron Lucchetti.

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Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Why Young Alumni Don't Give

Statistics show that alumni participation rates are slipping, and a large factor to this is the lack of giving by an institution's younger alumni. Recent graduates make up a large portion of the alumni base, yet colleges and universities have struggled in reaching them with a clear and relevant message on the importance of philanthropy.

In this article, Sam Huleatt, a recent MBA graduate and entrepreneur, discusses this trend and ways that educational institutions can reach out to the younger generation.

Here is a link to the blog entry.

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Age of Riches: After Succeeding, Young Tycoons Try, Try Again

Interesting article on the young rich. "The Internet, a low-overhead medium with a global reach, has greatly accelerated the wealth creation phenomenon, producing a larger breed of multimillionaires even younger and richer than in the past."

Read the full 10.28.07 New York Times article by Gary Rivlan.

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Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Concerns may foil a tax break eyed by donor-advised funds

"A movement to include donor-advised funds in charitable IRA rollovers may stall due to concerns at the IRS and among members of Congress.

According to the Internal Revenue Service, which is working on a report about the funds for Congress, it has seen problems at some smaller organizations that are using donor-advised funds as tax loopholes. The IRS said it hasn't seen that problem at the large financial institutions that sponsor the funds, however."

Read more of this 11.06.07 article by Sara Hansard from Investment News.

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Hacking Philanthropy: the Emergence of Markets Can Change the Sector

Brad Burnham discusses ideas that came out of a private conference in New York called "Hacking Philanthropy." At the meeting there was a great deal of the discussion on the emergence of markets as an organizing principle in philanthropy.

Read more of this 10.24.07 article from onPhilanthropy.

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Monday, November 5, 2007

Generation Q

Thomas Friedman comments on Generation Q.

Read this 10.10.07 op-ed from the New York Times.


O'Neal Ranks No. 5 on Payout List, Group Says

Stan O'Neal got the fifth-largest exit-pay package for a U.S. executive when he left Merrill Lynch & Co. with $161.5 million in securities and retirement benefits, according to research group Corporate Library.

Read this 11.2.07 update from

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Age of Riches: Bye, Bye B-School

As more Americans have become abundantly wealthy, young people are recalculating old assumptions about success. Is what sets the new crowd apart is the "need for speed and a thirst for instant riches?"

Read this 9.16.07 New York Times article by Louise Story.


The Revolution of Chairman Li

Li Ka-shing, Asia's richest man, is shaking up philanthropy in China.

Read the full 11.2.07 Wall Street Journal article by Kate Linebaugh and Jane Spencer.

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Thursday, November 1, 2007

Chronicle of Philanthropy News of Note

Here are links to some interesting and relevant articles from the Chronicle of Philanthropy. Enjoy!

Nonprofit Groups Urged to Follow 33 Fund-Raising and Management Standards
Click here to read.

New Ethics Code Governs Businesses That Serve Fund Raisers
Click here to read.

Princeton Lawsuit Puts Spotlight on Nonprofit Governance Issue
Click here to read.

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Wealth Report: Mukesh Ambani Becomes World's Richest Man

India's Mukesh Ambani, Chairman of Reliance Industries Limited, has become the world's richest man.

Read this 10.29.07 article about Mr. Ambani and view a list of the five richest people in the world on the Stock Market Views website.

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Another Exec Leaves Yahoo; Has Facebook Replaced Yahoo in the Big 3?

Web 2.0 discussion continued...

Allen Stern from CenterNetworks comments on the exodus of leadership from Yahoo! and who will win "the race:" Google, Micrsoft, Yahoo ... or Facebook?

Read Stern's commentary.


For Those Born Rich, Lessons in How to Stay That Way

Julie Bick, from the New York Times, reports on what some are doing to prepare their children for the riches coming their way.

Read the full 10.28.07 New York Times article.

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Senator Tells Hospitals To Stop Protesting Form 990 Changes

Read about how Sen. Charles E. Grassley is trying to get nonprofit hospitals to scale back their opposition to proposed changes to the Form 990 informational tax form.

View the 10.31.2007 article by Peter Panepento on the Chronicle of Philanthropy website.

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Gates studies the Rich

From the Wall Street Journal 10.31.2007 blog.

The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation announced yesterday that it's funding a new survey of the rich, called "The Joys and Dilemmas of Wealth." The study, co-funded by Wachovia's Calibre division, will be conducted by Boston College's Center on Wealth and Philanthropy. It will poll people worth $25 million or more, with a "considerable portion" of respondents worth $100 million or more.

Click here to read more.

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