Forbes 400 List of Richest Americans Introduces Philanthropy Score

Forbes 400 List of Richest Americans Introduces Philanthropy Score

According to the latest edition of the Forbes 400, only twenty-nine of America's four hundred richest individuals have given at least $1 billion and/or 20 percent of their total net worth to philanthropic causes.

Based on an estimate of total lifetime giving, excluding pledges or announced gifts that have yet to be paid out, this year's list includes a philanthropy score, from 1 to 5, with 5 being the most generous, for each individual. Notable top givers include Bill Gates, who has donated $35.8 billion — more than anyone else in dollar terms — or 27 percent of his fortune as of September 2018, to the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, and George Soros, who tops the list in terms of lifetime giving as a percentage of total net worth at 79 percent, or $32 billion, having transferred $18 billion from his Soros Management Fund to the Open Society Foundations in 2017.

Other billionaires who received a philanthropy score of 5 include T. Denny Sanford ($1.6 billion, 38 percent), Warren Buffett ($35.1 billion, 28 percent), Jeff Skoll ($1.26 billion, 21 percent), Mitchell Rales ($1 billion, 21 percent), Julian Robertson ($1.1 billion, 20 percent), David Rubenstein ($675 million, 19 percent), Dustin Moskovitz ($1.44 billion, 12 percent), Paul G. Allen ($2.6 billion, 11 percent), and Michael R. Bloomberg ($6 billion, 10 percent). Forbes also notes that thirty-six billionaires who have given $1 billion did not receive the top score because their giving did not add up to 20 percent of their net worth, while another three who gave less than $1 billion still earned a score of 5. Seventy-seven of the Forbes 400 received a score of 1, including President Donald Trump, who has given less than $30 million (less than 1 percent) of his fortune to charitable or philanthropic causes.