National Center for Charitable Statistics
Login | Register
 

Overview of NCCS Data Files

Data File Descriptions

NCCS provides a number of data files that vary by source, number and type of organizations included, and number and type of variables included.  The most commonly used files are described below. Click here for a handout of NCCS resources for the nonprofit sector.

Business Master File

The IRS Business Master Files (BMF) contain descriptive information for all active organizations that have registered for tax-exempt status with the IRS. Variables such as NTEE codes and FIPS codes are added by NCCS to provide additional research capabilities. NCCS has BMF datasets going back to 1995.

Three BMF datasets are made available monthly:

  • All registered and active organizations, including public charities, private foundations. and 501(c)(other)
  • 501(c)(3) organizations, including public charities and private foundations
  • Other exempt organizations, including social welfare organizations, trade unions, and others.

Uses of the BMF include:

  • Tracking the number of nonprofits operating in the United States
  • Checking the tax-exempt status of organizations
  • Creating lists of organizations by region
  • Generating mailing lists for nonprofit organizations

Click here to search the BMF.

Click here to view a sample of the BMF file data. The sample includes 10 records from the August 2012 BMF for all organizations.

Click here to view a data dictionary of the BMF file


 

Core Financial Files

The Core Files include approximately 60 financial variables from the Form 990-series (Form 990, Form 990-EZ, Form 990-PF) for those organizations required to file. The Core File data is updated annually and NCCS has Core File data going back to 1989.

Three Core files are available for each year:

  • 501(c)(3) public charities who report gross receipts of at least $50,000 and file form 990 or 990-EZ.
  • 501(c)(3) private foundations, all of which must file form 990-PF.
  • Other exempt organizations, including social welfare organizations, trade unions, and others.

Uses of the Core Files include:

  • Creating current statistics on the finances of the nonprofit sector
  • Reviewing the finances of an organization
  • Building state or regional financial reports
  • Comparing the finances of organizations by state, region, type, or size
  • Conducting financial analysis of revenues, expenses, and assets

Click here for information on what types of organizations are required to file a Form 990 with financial information.

Click here to view a Form 990 with field names. Only the line items that have variable names are included in the Core Files. The variables included in the Core File are the same from year to year.

Click here to view a sample of the Core File data. The sample includes 10 records from the Core 2010 public charities file.

Click here to view a data dictionary of the Core Files.

 

Core Supplement Financial Files

The Core Supplement Financial files expand on the public charity Core File variables to include more financial, program, and officer compensation data, for a subset of the organizations. Generally, the largest organizations in each NTEE Code category are included. Data for multiple years are included in the same file.

Uses of the Core Supplement Financial Files include:
  • Conducting detailed financial analysis of revenues, expenses, and assets
  • Reviewing director and compensation data
  • Learning more details about the programs and services

Click here to view a sample of the Core Supplement Financial Files data. The sample includes 10 records from the Core 2010 public charities file.

Click here to view a data dictionary of the Core Supplement Financial Files.

 

 

Statistics of Income Sample Files

The IRS Statistics of Income Sample (SOI) Files include significantly more financial detail than other NCCS data files for a random sample of the organizations that file 990-series forms. This dataset is a comprehensive research file of all large charities plus a random sample of smaller organizations stratified and weighted by assets level. It contains more than 300 financial fields.

The following datasets have been produced annually since 2005:

  • 501(c)(3) public charities who report gross receipts of at least $25,000 and file form 990 or 990-EZ.
  • 501(c)(3) private foundations, all of which must file form 990-PF.
  • Other exempt organizations, including social welfare organizations, trade unions, and others.

Click here to view a Form 990 with field names for the 2009 SOI sample.

Click here to view a sample of the IRS Statistics of Income Sample file data. The sample includes 10 records from the 2009 SOI sample for public charities.

Click here to view data dictionaries of the SOI files.

 


 

National Nonprofit Research Database

The NCCS-GuideStar National Nonprofit Research Database (the "Digitized Data") contains 501(c)(3) public charities that filed Forms 990 or 990-EZ from 1998-2003.  The Digitized Data includes hundreds of additional variables unavailable in the Core files.

Click here to view a Form 990 with field names for the Digitized Data.

Click here to view a sample of the Digitized Data. The sample includes 10 records from the 2003 Digitized Data on revenue.

Click here to view a data dictionary of the Digitized Data.

 

 

Unified Database of Arts Organizations

The Unified Database of Arts Organizations (UDAO) is a master list of commercial, nonprofit, and governmental organizations with arts programs. Some are entirely arts-oriented, while others may primarily focus outside the arts despite having at least one arts program. The UDAO can be linked to other parts of the NCCS data system.

Click here to view a sample of the UDAO data. The sample includes 1 record from the latest version of the UDAO.

Click here to view a data dictionary of the UDAO file.

 

 

Master File

The Master File is a cumulative list of all exempt organizations from the Business Master Files from 1989 to the present. It is used primarily to find organizations' Employer Identification Numbers (EINs).

Click here to view a sample of the Master file data. The sample includes 10 records from the August 2012 version of the master file for all organizations.

Click here to view a data dictionary of the Master file.

 

 

Important Links

Key Data Concepts

Download Data

Guide to Using NCCS Data (PDF)

Data dictionaries describing the variables in each file 

About NCCS  |  Contact Us  |  FAQ  |  Knowledge Base  |  Advanced Users