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The Boston Globe

Ideas

Donor-advised funds: Where charity goes to wait

$45 billion of American philanthropic money has been given—but not received.

When Americans think about donating money to charity around the holidays, they tend to think of the organizations whose names have become practically synonymous with philanthropy: the United Way, the Salvation Army, Feed the Children.

But on a list of the top money-raising charities in the country, the name at number two is one most people have never heard: Fidelity Charitable, the philanthropic arm of the giant Boston-based asset management firm. In 2012, Fidelity Charitable collected $3.6 billion—more than the American Cancer Society, or the Boys and Girls Club, or the American Red Cross.

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