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BMO Harris Private Banking Study: Nearly 70 Per Cent of Canadians Support Federal Budget's New Charitable Giving Credit

TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Mar 28, 2013) - Today BMO Harris Private Banking released a study which found that nearly 70 per cent of Canadians support the "First-Time Donor's Super Credit" introduced in the federal budget last week.

The study also found that:

  • Ninety-three per cent of Canadians feel that the new credit will encourage more charitable giving or maintain current levels of support.
  • Fifty per cent of young Canadians (18-34 years old) say that they will contribute more to charities because of the new credit.

The "First-Time Donor's Super Credit", which is available until 2017, is aimed at encouraging Canadians, and particularly younger people, to support charities by giving new donors an extra, one-time 25 per cent tax credit for cash donations up to a maximum of $1,000.

According to Statistics Canada, Canadians gave almost $8.5 billion to charitable causes during the 2011 tax year, an average of almost $1,500 per tax filer.

"Canadians are a generous bunch when supporting charitable causes," said Marvi Ricker, Vice President & Managing Director of Philanthropic Services, BMO Harris Private Banking. "However, the percentage of people who made a contribution last year is down six per cent since 1990. We believe the new credit will inspire younger Canadians and first-time donors to give. Supporting a worthy cause is a great way to support one's community and help the less fortunate."

Ms. Ricker acknowledged that young Canadians just starting their careers may face competing financial priorities which can impact their ability to support charitable causes. "Young people should understand that it doesn't take a lot to help make a difference. Establishing good habits early on, such as earmarking a certain amount annually for charitable causes, should be encouraged. The new credit should make it that much easier."

Ms. Ricker concluded, "The introduction of the new credit is an example of how smart public policy can be used to encourage and incent young Canadians to do the right thing. The 'First-Time Donor's Super Credit' could help start an entire generation on a lifetime path of charitable giving."

For more information on charitable giving, please visit: http://www.bmo.com/harrisprivatebanking.

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The online survey was conducted by Pollara from March 25th to March 26th, 2013 among a sample of 1,000 Canadians aged 18 years and over. A probability sample of this size would yield results accurate to +/- 3.1%, 19 times out of 20.