Bank of America Charitable Gift Fund Enhancements Offer Donors Greater Efficiency and Flexibility

Personalization and Automation Within the Donor-advised Fund’s Online Portal Provide Superior User Experience; Donor-advised Fund Growth Reflects Strategic Giving Trends

Tuesday, October 7, 2014 10:00 am EDT

Bank of America today announced enhancements to its Charitable Gift Fund designed to help donors increase the efficiency and strategic impact of their charitable giving. One of the industry’s largest and fastest-growing donor-advised funds, the Fund’s innovative online portal now offers a more intuitive user experience that enables donors to easily research charities, track philanthropic activity and align gifting with personal goals and investing strategies. Specific enhancements and benefits to donors include:

  • Simplified, personalized navigation: Donors can customize site navigation to match their giving behaviors and interests, with single-click access to research, grant-making history, balances and statements – providing a more personalized, easy-to-navigate experience.
  • Embedded search: Enhanced search capabilities embedded in the online portal enable donors to explore information about virtually all charitable organizations and programs in the U.S., with direct access to their most recent IRS data.
  • Pre-populated forms: Donors can now complete all grant requests online, with grant-making forms automatically populated with details about the charitable organization(s) to which they’re gifting. This pre-population of information can save donors a considerable amount of time, particularly those making multiple, recurring or frequent gifts.
  • Increased access to exchange-traded fund (ETF) options: The Bank of America Charitable Gift Fund has the broadest range of investment options currently available in a donor-advised fund. Account holders can select from 22 investment options, including seven asset allocation strategies with options for mutual funds, ETFs and cash. Based on investor demand, portfolios made up of ETF-only investments – which had previously been reserved for accounts with $3 million or more in assets – are now available to all accounts.
  • Enhanced flexibility: Donors also have the flexibility to select their own fund name, as they would with a family foundation, and to tailor timing of gift distribution to optimize tax and investing considerations.

"These enhancements to our Charitable Gift Fund make it easier for donors to achieve their philanthropic goals,” said Don Greene, National Philanthropic Strategy and Product executive for U.S. Trust. “Giving away money sounds easy, but doing so strategically and in a meaningful way can be more fulfilling for donors and have greater impact. More than ever, we see donors focused on maximizing their giving – beginning with how they fund gifts and the vehicles they use to make them.”

For nearly six decades, the Bank of America Charitable Gift Fund has provided individuals, families and businesses a structured investment vehicle to manage and distribute their charitable assets. From year-end 2011 to year-end 2013, assets in the Fund have increased by 79 percent*. Across the industry, donor-advised funds are the fastest-growing source of grants to charitable organizations, growing by more than 40 percent annually in 2012 and 2013.1

Growth in Bank of America’s Charitable Gift Fund assets can be attributed to donor demand for strategic giving vehicles, a commitment to delivering a superior user experience through ongoing enhancements to the online portal, and continued expansion of the company’s nationwide team of philanthropic specialists. This network of 180 philanthropic specialists works with donors, as well as their financial and wealth advisors, to help maximize giving by providing guidance to donors on the fundamental building blocks of strategic giving and expertise in family philanthropy, mission development, intergenerational wealth transfer, specific giving sectors and cross-border philanthropy.

* Source Bank of America, as of December 31, 2013
1 The Chronicle of Philanthropy's Annual Donor-Advised Fund Survey, 2013

Philanthropic Solutions
U.S. Trust’s Philanthropic Solutions Group serves the needs of nonprofit institutions, philanthropic individuals and families across the investment businesses with Bank of America. Philanthropic Solutions distributes more than $300 million in grants to charitable organizations annually on behalf of clients where U.S. Trust serves as trustee, co-trustee or grant-making agent. The investment businesses within Bank of America, including U.S. Trust, Merrill Lynch Wealth Management and the Merrill Lynch Private Banking and Investment Group are among the nation's leading providers of investment and philanthropic services to individuals, families, foundations, endowments and other nonprofit organizations.

Bank of America
Bank of America is one of the world's leading financial institutions, serving individual consumers, small businesses, middle-market businesses and large corporations with a full range of banking, investing, asset management and other financial and risk management products and services. The company provides unmatched convenience in the United States, serving approximately 49 million consumer and small business relationships with approximately 5,000 retail banking offices and approximately 16,000 ATMs and award-winning online banking with 30 million active users and more than 15 million mobile users. Bank of America is among the world's leading wealth management companies and is a global leader in corporate and investment banking and trading across a broad range of asset classes, serving corporations, governments, institutions and individuals around the world. Bank of America offers industry-leading support to approximately 3 million small business owners through a suite of innovative, easy-to-use online products and services. The company serves clients through operations in more than 40 countries. Bank of America Corporation stock (NYSE: BAC) is listed on the New York Stock Exchange.

Institutional Investments and Philanthropic Solutions (Philanthropic Solutions) is part of U.S. Trust, Bank of America Corporation (U.S. Trust). U.S. Trust operates through Bank of America, N.A. and other subsidiaries of Bank of America Corporation (BofA Corp.). Bank of America, N.A., Member FDIC. Banking and fiduciary activities are performed by wholly owned banking affiliates of BofA Corp., including Bank of America, N.A.

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