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Hey Mark Zuckerberg, We're Giving Lots of Money to Charity Too

Mark Zuckerberg has pledged to give away most of his fortune over his lifetime, but he's not the only American that is in a giving mood.

The old saying – it’s better to give than to receive – may have been on Mark Zuckerberg’s mind when earlier this month he pledged to give away 99-percent of his Facebook (FB) shares, worth $45 billion, over his lifetime. But as it turns out, Zuckerberg is just doing what the rest of us do, on a much larger scale. We’re in the midst of a bull market in giving. Charitable donations hit a record high last year, totaling $358 billion, according to Giving USA, which also projected that overall donations to charity will rise again this year. The demographics of giving tell an interesting story. According to a recently released survey compiled by Merrill Lynch and Age Wave, giving occurs at all ages, but retirees are the most generous. 'As the Baby Boomers, who have really impacted every stage in life that they've gone through, as they reach retirement age, the amount of dollars and the amount of time that they’re giving to the charities and causes they care about should be growing exponentially over the next two decades,’ said Jennie Sowers, a private wealth advisor at Merrill Lynch. TheStreet's Rhonda Schaffler has details from New York.