American Savings Bank is following in the footsteps of the state’s two largest banks in giving bonuses to employees and increasing the minimum wage.
The state’s third-largest bank said today it will award $1,000 bonuses to nearly all of its employees, excluding members of its executive team. American Savings, which has 49 branches, said 1,150 employees will receive the bonus on Friday.
In addition, the bank said it is increasing its starting wage to $15.25 an hour from $12.21 an hour, effective Jan. 1.
American Savings said it is handing out bonuses and boosting wages as a result of the passage of the $1.5 trillion Republican tax overhaul, which will save companies money by lowering income taxes. The federal corporate tax rate will be reduced to 21 percent from 35 percent beginning Jan. 1.
“We are constantly seeking ways to provide our teammates with the best experience possible,” American Savings President and CEO Rich Wacker said in a statement. “We’re proud to further invest in our team with these commitments, which will also allow us to retain and attract top talent as we continue to provide outstanding service to our customers.”
On Friday, Bank of Hawaii, the state’s second-largest bank, said it will give out $1,000 cash bonuses to 2,074 employees, or 95 percent of its workforce, that will be payable next week. The bonuses affect all employees below the senior vice president level. The bank also will increase its minimum wage to $15 an hour from $12 an hour starting Jan. 1.
First Hawaiian Bank followed Bank of Hawaii’s announcement with its own, saying it will give out $1,500 cash bonuses to 2,264 employees, or all but 11 members of its senior management team, in early January. The state’s largest bank also will increase its minimum wage to $15 an hour from $12.75 an hour for 613 employees starting Jan. 1. In October the bank said it adjusted the minimum teller wage to $12.75 an hour from $12 an hour.
The announcements by the three banks follow in the footsteps of several mainland companies that have given their employees $1,000 bonuses, increased worker pay, or both, after the passage of the tax bill.