Republican tax plan will increase share buybacks and dividends — not wages: Chuck Schumer

  • The Republican tax plan will lead to more corporate share buybacks, not higher wages, according to Democratic congressional leader Chuck Schumer
  • In a Wednesday statement, Schumer said that major U.S. companies have announced "an astonishing $83.7 billion in share buybacks, anticipating the passage of tax reform"

Washington's newly-approved tax reform bill will lead to more share buybacks, not higher wages, according to Democratic Senator Chuck Schumer.

Senate Democratic Leader Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY) speaks at a press confernce on urging the GOP To Slow Down Republican Tax Bill In Senate on December 13, 2017 in Washington, DC.
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Senate Democratic Leader Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY) speaks at a press confernce on urging the GOP To Slow Down Republican Tax Bill In Senate on December 13, 2017 in Washington, DC.

After the tax plan received passage on Capitol Hill, AT&T and Comcast announced they would give $1,000 bonuses to thousands of U.S. employees. Other companies lined up with their own announcements: Fifth Third Bancorp said it will also hand out employee bonuses and raise the minimum wage, while Wells Fargo announced it is raising its minimum wage.

Still, it's wrong to assume Republican tax reform will create jobs and higher wages, Schumer's office wrote in a statement released Wednesday.

AT&T "is the exception, not the rule, when it comes to the biggest corporations spending their windfall," the statement said. "Over the past several weeks, major companies have announced an astonishing $83.7 billion in share buybacks, anticipating the passage of tax reform."

Since the start of the month, at least 32 U.S. companies have announced share buybacks of $100 million or more, according to the statement.

Those include Home Depot's $15 billion plan that was announced on Dec. 6, Oracle's $12 billion, which was unveiled just last week, and Pfizer's $10 billion buyback that was revealed on Tuesday.

"There is a reason so few executives have said the tax bill will lead to more jobs, investments, and higher wages — because it will actually lead to share buybacks, corporate bonuses, and dividends," Schumer's statement said.

Disclosure: Comcast is the parent company of NBCUniversal, which owns CNBC.