SunTrust ups 401(k) match, minimum raise

SunTrust Bank, a bank that operates 1,400 branches across the southeastern region, is upgrading its employee benefits package and wages in response to the tax reform bill.

All 24,000 employees will receive a one-time 1% base pay contribution to their 401(k) plans, in addition to SunTrust’s ongoing 6% dollar-for-dollar match. Those employees also are eligible for a $1,000 financial incentive after completing the company’s financial fitness program.

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SunTrust Banks Inc. signage is displayed on the door of a branch in Washington, D.C., U.S., on Tuesday, Nov. 11, 2014. SunTrust Banks Inc. announced plans in Aug. to hire as many as 200 people for its investment bank to expand businesses including capital markets and stock research and add expertise targeting the energy and health-care industries. Photographer: Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg

“Nearly 40% of Americans report living paycheck to paycheck,” says SunTrust Chief Human Resources Officer Margaret Callihan. “We know that saving leads to reduced stress and builds financial confidence. That is why a discretionary contribution to 401(k) plans and a $1,000 for completing a financial fitness program were so important to us. We also give all teammates a day off each year just to focus on their personal finances.”

See also: Comerica Bank raises minimum wage, gives bonuses

SunTrust is the latest in a string of financial services firms to announce compensation and benefits changes due to the slashed corporate tax. Fifth Third Bank, Comerica Bank and Wells Fargo all said they would raise their minimum wages to $15 an hour, among other employee benefit upgrades.

Likewise, the bank pledged to raise the minimum wage to $15 for about 3,000 workers as well as implement merit-based pay increases for another 5,000 hourly employees.

“The tax reform affords us the opportunity to invest in our company and the communities we serve,” Callihan says. “We believe that tax reform will improve the competitiveness of American business and promote economic growth. As a result, we wanted to take steps that would have a multi-year impact on the key constituents that count on us.”

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