When the Trump administration put through its tax cuts, it was promised that 70% of the tax cut would go to workers. I predicted that these cuts would not primarily be used to raise the wages of employees or to hire more workers. Now that the cuts have been in place, there is actual data about what they did with the money they saved.
According to CNBC, the tax savings were used primarily for:
- Paying down corporate debt.
- One-time bonuses.
- Stock buybacks (which, to be accurate, has been consistently been a priority).
According to Bloomberg, the uses of the $54.5 billion in tax savings were:
- Stock buybacks/increasing dividends: $21.1 billion.
- Business Investments: $12.3 Billion
- Employees (wages, benefits and bonuses): $8.1 billion.
- Philanthropy: $1.4 billion.
According to NBC
- Stock buybacks.
According to the NY Times
- Stock buybacks
To be fair, some of the money from the tax savings did go to employees (counting bonuses). However, the 70% promise was not kept. Of course, the promise was made by the White House and not by the companies–they did not, as some have pointed out, promise to do anything. However, the tax cuts were sold (in part) by making the claim that they would benefit workers (hence the 70% promise). As such, I certainly do not blame the corporations–the state gave them the cuts and gave workers a promise but did nothing to ensure that the cuts would be used as promised by the state.