Southwest will pay $1k employee bonuses to mark tax bill

Southwest Airlines says it will pay all employees a $1,000 cash bonus next week and order more planes as a result of the recent tax law.

Southwest said Tuesday that it exercised options to buy 40 more Boeing jets valued at $4.5 billion while delaying 23 previous orders valued at $2.1 billion by up to five years. Airlines often get discounts from sticker prices.

The airline also says it will donate an extra $5 million to charities in 2018. It did not identify recipients.

Dallas-based Southwest pays cash taxes and so expects to benefit from the new law's lower corporate income-tax rate. In addition, airlines should benefit from a provision that will let them expense the cost of new planes more quickly.

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