Big Corporations Make Big Promises For Tax Cut Bill

On Wednesday, much to the chagrin of most Democrats and the majority of Americans, the Tac Cuts and Jobs Act was finally passed. While top economic analysts feel there could be a number of edits to the bill in the coming years, some of the benefits the tax cuts provide to corporate America are already starting to trickle down to its employees.

A number of larger U.S. Corporations have already made plans and promised to boost hourly pay and even dole out a number of one-off bonuses to their employees if Trump does in fact sign the bill into law. The bill has already been voted on and passed by a predominantly Republican congress, so the bill is expected to be signed off on without a hiccup.

The first company to announce plans to share the wealth was AT&T, which offered a one-time $1,000 bonus to more than 200,000 of it's non-management employees and a number of undisclosed bonuses to its front-line managers. AT&T also confirmed that it had plans to invest a further $1 billion more in 2018.

Soon after AT&T's disclosure, media giant Comcast announced that it would also be awarding one-time bonuses of $1,000 to more than 100,000 front-line and non-executive employees. The union that represents many of those workers, however, has also demanded that the media giant also guarantee it's employees a $4,000 a year household wage increase. This is the future Republican lawmakers came up with that they hoped would be the eventual outcome of the tax cut.

A number of other corporate giants like Wells Fargo, Boeing and Fifth Third Bancorp have also made announcements alluding to plans of passing along some of the windfall from decreased taxes to their workers.

These announcements all show promising hope that the ultimate goal of the bill will be achieved - to provide financial benefit to the middle-class.

The bill is not without its detractors however. Although the announcements from industry giants show some promise of the bill achieving it's ultimate goal, there are still many on both Capitol Hill and Wall Street that feel that big business will in the end benefit far more than middle-class Americans will. While big businesses are clearly passing along a portion of their windfall, there is serious debate as to just how much of their tax savings is actually going to end up in the pockets of middle-class Americans and how much will end up lining the pockets of the highest echelons of corporate leadership.

Not all major corporations are stopping at one time bonuses, either. Fifth Third Bancorp, based in Ohio, announced that it intends to raise the minimum wage of all of its hourly employees to $15 an hour in addition to distributing one-off bonuses to more than 13,500 of it's employees.

In addition to the single bonuses offered by Wells Fargo, they also stated that they too are bolstering their minimum wage to $15 an hour, effective as of March 2018. This may provide a much-needed PR boost for the San Fransisco based bank based on the recent scandal involving the creation of 3.5 million unauthorized accounts. The raise to their current minimum wage represents and 11% increase over their current base pay of $13.50 an hour.

Rather than doling out windfall monies directly to employees, corporate aerospace firm Boeing has committed to making more than $300 million in investments, including employee education and training. In addition, they have also committed another $100 million towards enhancing current Boeing facilities in conjunction with their in-house "workforce of the future" program.

Media conglomerate Comcast, which also owns NBC Universal, is also interested in investing in their own future. In addition to their commitment to award special $1,000 bonuses to more than 100,000 of their eligible employees, they have also announced that they intend to invest more than $50 billion over the next 5 years in their own infrastructure. These include improvements that will extend the capacity of their broadband plant as well as making significant investments in their film, television and theme park offerings.

While all of these expenditures may eventually benefit and impact middle-class employees, it still remains to be seen who will actually benefit the most: the workers or the C-Suite executives.

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