The Top Philanthropic Companies in 2012

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Companies were in a giving mood in 2012. The most philanthropic companies of 2012, named by the Chronicle of Philanthropy, are those that are known for their charitable pursuits and contributions. The charities that companies support include those that benefit the communities in which their employees work, health-related causes, educational foundations and those that promote economic development.

5 Exxon Mobil Corporation

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Exxon Mobil gave $213,374,183 in charitable donations, about 0.3 percent of its profits, in 2012. The oil and gas company says it makes charitable contributions to nonprofit organizations around the world. It focuses on math and science initiatives; projects that help prevent; and treat malaria outbreaks and initiatives that help women entrepreneurs in developing countries. Exxon Mobil also supports human rights causes in the areas it operates.

4 Goldman Sachs Group

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The global investment banking and securities firm Goldman Sachs Group gave $241,278,912 in 2012, which the Chronicle of Philanthropy says is 3.9 percent of its profits. The firm states that it strives to work with nonprofit organizations around the world. The donations go to female entrepreneurs in developing and emerging markets, educational efforts and small business owners.

3 Chevron Corporation

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In 2012, the Chevron Corporation gave charitable contributions totaling $262,430,000, an amount that represents 0.6 percent of its profits. Chevron’s website says that its contributions focus on the social and economic welfare within the countries that the petrol company operates, such Angola, China and Thailand. In addition to promoting economic development, Chevron supports health-related causes and educational endeavors.

2 Walmart

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Walmart was the second most philanthropic company in 2012, when the company gave $311,607,208 to charities. This figure represents 4.5 percent of the corporate giant’s profits, according to the Chronicle of Philanthropy. Walmart reports that its foundation focuses on underserved populations and directs its charitable giving toward career opportunities, sustainability, hunger relief, healthy eating and women’s economic empowerment around the world.

1 Wells Fargo

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Coming in at first place in 2012, banking company Wells Fargo gave $315,845,766 in cash, according to the Chronicle of Philanthropy. While the nine-figure amount seems huge, it represents just 1.3 percent of the company’s profits. The $315.8 million is a great comeback compared to 2011, as the company increased its donations by 48 percent, according to the Wells Fargo website. Wells Fargo supports more than 19,000 nonprofit organizations and educational endeavors throughout the United States.

Flora Richards-Gustafson has been writing professionally since 2003. She creates copy for websites, marketing materials and printed publications. Richards-Gustafson specializes in SEO and writing about small-business strategies, health and beauty, interior design, emergency preparedness and education. Richards-Gustafson received a Bachelor of Arts from George Fox University in 2003 and was recognized by Cambridge's "Who's Who" in 2009 as a leading woman entrepreneur.

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