SEI Survey: Great Wealth Brings Great Responsibility
Poll Reveals 82 Percent of Wealthy Believe Wealth Creates an
Obligation for Philanthropy
OAKS, PA -- (Marketwire) -- 03/07/13 -- While some people view
charitable giving as a nice thing to do, the overwhelming majority of
ultra-wealthy individuals see charitable giving as a necessity,
according to a poll released today by SEI (NASDAQ: SEIC). The poll
reveals that 82 percent of wealthy families believe that having more
money means you have a greater obligation to be philanthropic. When
asked what keeps them "up at night" regarding their charitable
giving, more than 1 in 5 of those polled (22 percent) said they
wonder if they are doing enough to make a difference. The survey
reveals an increased desire among the ultra-wealthy to give a greater
percentage of their wealth to charitable endeavors and to measure the
impact of their donations more clearly. The survey, of more than 200
individuals representing families with more than $10 million in
financial assets on average, was carried out by the independent
research firm Scorpio Partnership*.
Allocation and impact were two themes that came up frequently in the
survey. While respondents on average currently allocate 12.2 percent
of their wealth to causes annually, ideally they would like to
allocate 19.1 percent on average. Additionally, the single most
important factor the ultra-wealthy pay attention to when giving to an
organization is evidence that the organization is having an impact
(48 percent), followed by how the organization will use the donation
(31 percent). More than half of those polled (51 percent) said that
economic benefits, such as tax incentives, were the least important
factor when deciding to give to charity.
"The results of the survey show that wealthy families view
philanthropy as an important part of their lives and have big
expectations when it comes to the amount they give, organizations
they select, and how those organizations use those donations," said
Michael Farrell, Managing Director for SEI Private Wealth Management.
"Although philanthropy is clearly a very personal and emotional
endeavor, many wealthy individuals are looking for a systematic way
to manage charitable giving, as well as a means to quantify the
impact of their donations. As these expectations change it becomes
more important than ever for individuals to develop tangible
philanthropy goals and to work with a partner to develop a plan for
achieving them and measuring their success."
When it comes to measuring the results of their philanthropic
activities, nearly two-thirds of those polled (65 percent) consider
"social impact" as their preferred measure, while slightly less than
half (45 percent) prefer "numeric measures specific to the cause"
(i.e. improved literacy figures, reduced health issues, etc.) to
evaluate the results of their philanthropy. Only 1 in 5 respondents
(20 percent) consider the "financial impact" as their preferred
measure of results, while 16 percent do not measure the results of
While the majority of those polled said they want to allocate more of
their wealth to charitable giving, the survey revealed insights as to
why they aren't currently giving more. Nearly half of those polled
(41 percent) said if they had more confidence that the level of their
wealth would continue to support their lifestyle and their family,
they would increase their philanthropic giving in a material way.
Nearly the same amount (39 percent) said they would increase their
giving substantially if the market improves their financial
situation. The biggest non-financial barrier to increased giving,
cited by nearly a third of those polled (32 percent), was finding
something they could be more passionate about.
*Answer percentages may not equal 100 percent because respondents
were able to select more than one answer. The survey results are part
of an ongoing series that SEI has developed in collaboration with
Scorpio Partnership to help gain front-line insights on wealth goals,
behavior, and issues of ultra-high-net-worth families. For more
information about the poll, please email SEIPrivateWealth@seic.com.
About SEI Private Wealth Management
SEI Private Wealth Management
provides clarity into the complex issues faced by wealthy individuals
and families so they can make better decisions for themselves, their
families, and their communities. In September 2011, SEI Private
Wealth Management, formerly the SEI Wealth Network, was named to the
National Association of Board Certified Advisory Practices' (NABCAP)
Premier Advisor list, published by the Philadelphia Business Journal.
SEI Private Wealth Management is an umbrella name for various life
and wealth advisory services provided by SEI Investments Management
Corporation (SIMC). SIMC is a subsidiary of SEI. For more information
about SEI Private Wealth Management, visit
SEI (NASDAQ: SEIC) is a leading global provider of
investment processing, fund processing, and investment management
business outsourcing solutions that help corporations, financial
institutions, financial advisors, and ultra-high-net-worth families
create and manage wealth. As of December 31, 2012, through its
subsidiaries and partnerships in which the company has a significant
interest, SEI manages or administers $458 billion in mutual fund and
pooled or separately managed assets, including $201 billion in assets
under management and $257 billion in client assets under
administration. For more information, visit www.seic.com.
+1 215-564-3200 x110
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