Employees at American Airlines are each getting a $1,000 bonus. The airline, with a maintenance base in Tulsa, made the announcement in a memo to employees. The airline has 5,200 employees in Tulsa. That translates to a $5.2 million economic impact on the Tulsa economy. The airline credits the recently passed corporate tax hike as the reason for the bonus. The corporate rate was cut from 35% to 21%.
Read the memo below:
Dear Fellow Team Members,
It’s been another amazing year for American Airlines, for our country, and for the world at large. What a privilege it is for all of us at American whose jobs are all about transporting people to the most important moments in their lives. The importance of our purpose is especially felt this time of year.
Recent tax reform has received much publicity. While the company does not yet pay cash taxes due to our enormous losses in the past, there is no doubt that our country’s new tax structure will have positive long-term benefits for American. We will be able to invest even more in aircraft and facilities, and we will be able to do so with even greater confidence about the future. As we analyze those potential future benefits, our leadership team, backed by our Board of Directors, considered how a portion of that positive impact might be directly shared with the very people who produce the profits at American—all of you.
We are pleased to announce that in light of this new tax structure and in recognition of our outstanding team members, American will distribute $1,000 to each team member (excluding Officers) at our mainline and wholly owned regional carriers. These distributions will total approximately $130 million and will be made in the first quarter of 2018.
This is not an action we take lightly when balanced against the returns our shareholders/owners demand and deserve. But we believe it is the right thing to do for our team, which ultimately benefits our shareholders too. This is one more proof point that working at American is to be part of a team that recognizes taking care of those who take care of our customers is the cornerstone of our competitive advantage. In short, it doesn’t feel right to receive the positive impacts of this historic tax reform without making sure, in the clearest most direct way possible, that those benefits are shared with the very people who matter the most to our customers and shareholders.
The engine of American Airlines is our team, and the energy and enthusiasm each of you choose to bring to your jobs every day defines the American Airlines experience for our customers. Let’s keep making sure each and every customer is thankful they choose American throughout the year ahead. That attitude will give American a competitive advantage others will find hard to replicate. We are incredibly proud and humble to work with all of you —here’s to a successful and happy 2018.