Securities Gift

Maximize Benefits

Gifts of appreciated stocks and bonds are very popular among Columbia alumni and friends. If you are considering a donation of $1,000 or more, there are many tax advantages to giving securities.

Tax Advantages
Among the many potential tax advantages, you are entitled to a federal income-tax charitable deduction when you file an itemized return, and many state income-tax laws also allow this type of deduction. When the donated items have been held for 12 months or longer, you may claim a deduction for their full fair-market value, and after appreciated securities are donated, you avoid paying tax on the capital gain.

Note: Always discuss donations with your tax consultant to maximize your benefits.

Deductibility Limits
A gift of long-term appreciated securities may be claimed as an income-tax charitable deduction in the year of the gift up to a limit of 30 percent of your adjusted gross income. Any excess deduction not claimed may be carried forward for an additional five years. If the donated securities have been held for less than 12 months, only your cost basis is deductible.

Matching Gifts
Many companies will make a matching gift to Columbia when one of their employees makes a donation. To find out if your company has such a program, use our convenient search engine.

Gifts of Closely Held Stock
You may be unaware that you may make gifts of closely held stock and other non-readily-marketable securities; moreover, they offer many tax advantages. These gifts involve special handling, however, and you are urged to contact the Office of Gift Planning to explore the alternatives for structuring this type of gift.

Depreciated Securities
If you hold securities that have declined in value, it is generally advisable not to donate them but rather to sell them to establish a tax loss and then donate the proceeds to Columbia.


How to Give Securities

Transfers from a Bank or Broker
If the securities are held by your bank or broker, we recommend an electronic transfer via the Depository Trust Company (DTC) system. Give your bank or broker the following instructions:

DTC# 0443
Pershing, LLC
For Credit to Account: N7M100061
Account name: Trustees of Columbia University

If your broker transfers securities electronically through the Federal Reserve, give the following instructions:

ABA# 021-000-018
Bank of NY/Pershing
For Credit to account #: N7M100061
Client account name: Trustees of Columbia University

It is imperative that you also email the details of the transfer to stockgift@columbia.edu alerting them to expect this gift. Failure to provide this additional information may cause a delay in recognizing you as the donor. Please include the following information in your email:

  • your name and address
  • the name and ticker symbol of the security
  • the number of shares
  • the school or department gift fund to be credited

Transmittal of Certificates
If you hold the securities in certificate form, send by registered mail or hand deliver your unendorsed certificates with a letter of transmittal describing the purpose of your gift to this address:

BNY Mellon Capital Markets, LLC
Attn: Jason Rakip
BNY Mellon Center, Suite 475
Pittsburgh, PA 15258

In a separate envelope, mail or deliver a stock or bond power for each security, along with a copy of the transmittal letter sent with the certificate. You can obtain blank powers from the Office of Gift Planning, your bank, or your broker. On the stock power, only fill in the description of the security and sign your name exactly as it appears on the face of the certificate. Do not fill in Columbia University's name as transferee or attorney to transfer on either the certificate(s) or stock power(s).

Splitting Certificates
Columbia can arrange for a stock certificate or bond to be split in the event that you wish to give fewer shares or bonds than the certificate represents.

If you are holding the stock certificate or bond, simply send it to the University by registered mail or hand deliver your unendorsed certificates with instructions that include your Social Security number and the number of shares (or the dollar amount of the bonds) you wish to donate to the following address:

BNY Mellon Capital Markets, LLC
Attn: Jason Rakip
BNY Mellon Center, Suite 475
Pittsburgh, PA 15258

In a separate envelope, mail or deliver a stock or bond power for each security, along with a copy of the instructions sent with the certificate. Your signature on the stock or bond power must bear a medallion signature guarantee, which can be obtained from your bank or broker. You can obtain blank powers from the Office of Gift Planning, your bank, or your broker. On the stock power, only fill in the description of the security and sign your name exactly as it appears on the face of the certificate. Do not fill in Columbia University's name as transferee or attorney to transfer on either the certificate(s) or stock power(s).

Columbia will arrange for a new bond or certificate for the remaining shares to be issued and returned to you. Of course, if your securities are held by a broker, the broker can arrange for the certificate or bond to be split.

Determining Effective Date and Valuation

When the Certificate Is Transferred Electronically
Effective date and valuation is calculated using the average of the high and low prices on the date of gift, which is the day the security is received into our brokerage account. If you are considering an electronic transfer through your bank or broker, we recommend the Depository Trust Company (DTC) system.

When the Certificate Is Sent by U.S. Mail
Effective date and valuation is calculated using the average of the high and low prices on the date of gift, which is indicated by the postmark. If the certificate and the stock power are sent on different dates, the later date will be used.

When the Certificate Is Hand Delivered
Effective date and valuation is calculated using the average of the high and low prices on the date of gift, which is the date the University takes physical possession of either the certificate or the stock power, whichever is later. Please note that the IRS does not accept your receipt from private carriers such as Federal Express as evidence of mailing. Thus, if you need to substantiate a year-end gift, we suggest you use the U.S. Postal Service.