AT&T said Wednesday that it plans to invest an additional $1 billion into its U.S. networks in 2018 and give hundreds of thousands of employees a one-time bonus following the passage of the Republican-led tax bill in Congress.
The additional funding is expected to support AT&T’s expanding high-speed Internet networks, as well as the next generation of wireless data, known as 5G, the telecom company said.
“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,” said Randall Stephenson, AT&T’s chief executive, in a statement.
As many as 200,000 employees will receive a bonus of $1,000 under the plan, according to AT&T.
AT&T spent roughly $23 billion building out its infrastructure in 2016, and estimates earlier this summer suggested the company was on track to spend $22 billion in 2017.
The announcement came as House and Senate Republicans approved a massive tax bill that slashes the corporate tax rate from 35 percent to 21 percent. Among the biggest beneficiaries of the legislation, analysts say, will be the telecom industry. AT&T’s effective tax rate is currently 32.7 percent.