Some of America’s biggest companies are launching new initiatives to benefit employees after the GOP-led House of Representatives approved the largest tax reform bill in three decades this week.
The $1.5 billion tax bill reduces the corporate tax rate from 35% to 21% and changes the way the U.S. government taxes companies that also operate internationally. The new plan, which is expected to be signed by President Donald Trump by January at the latest, is being hailed as a major victory for corporations and wealthy Americans.
FOX Business breaks down how employees at some major companies are benefitting from the corporate world’s good fortune.
The telecom giant said Wednesday that more than 200,000 of its employees, including union-represented and non-management workers, will be eligible for a $1,000 bonus. The checks will be in the mail in time for the holidays if Trump finalizes the tax bill with his signature before Christmas. AT&T (T) also said it will invest $1 billion more than expected in the U.S. in 2018, once the cuts are final.
“Congress, working closely with the President, took a monumental step to bring taxes paid by U.S. businesses in line with the rest of the industrialized world,” AT&T Chairman and CEO Randall Stephenson said in a statement. “This tax reform will drive economic growth and create good-paying jobs.”
The aerospace and defense company immediately announced $300 million in investments after the bill passed, with $100 million toward corporate giving including employee gift-match programs, $100 million toward workforce development, training and education and $100 million toward enhancing Boeing’s workplaces.
“On behalf of all of our stakeholders, we applaud and thank Congress and the administration for their leadership in seizing this opportunity to unleash economic energy in the United States,” Boeing (BA) President and CEO Dennis Muilenburg said in a statement. “It’s the single-most important thing we can do to drive innovation, support quality jobs and accelerate capital investment in our country.”
The Philadelphia-based telecom corporation said it would award $1,000 bonuses to more than 100,000 non-executive employees. In addition, Comcast (CMCSA) NBC Universal Chairman and CEO Brian L. Roberts said the company plans to spend more than $50 billion in the next five years on infrastructure investments that are expected to create “thousands of new direct and indirect jobs.”
In a press release, Comcast said the initiatives were “based on the passage of tax reform and the FCC’s action on broadband.”
Fifth Third Bancorp
The Cincinnati-based banking corporation said it would raise the minimum hourly wage for all employees to $15 per hour and dispense $1,000 bonuses for more than 13,500 workers. The company says tax reform was directly responsible for the initiatives.
“It is good for our communities, employees and Fifth Third Bank (FITB),” Fifth Third President and CEO Greg Carmichael said.
Wells Fargo & Company (WFC) said it would raise the minimum wage for its team members to $15 per hour and earmark $400 million for philanthropic initiatives in 2018. Some $100 million of that total will be committed to boosting small businesses, while $75 million will support neighborhood revitalization efforts.
“We believe tax reform is good for our U.S. economy and are pleased to take these immediate steps to invest in our team members, communities, small businesses, and homeowners,” said Wells Fargo President and CEO Tim Sloan. “We look forward to identifying additional opportunities for Wells Fargo to invest, as we continue to execute our business strategies and provide long-term value to all our stakeholders.”