Apple plans to create 20,000 U.S. jobs


SAN FRANCISCO – Apple (AAPL) said it will build a second corporate campus and hire 20,000 workers in a $350 billion, five-year commitment to the U.S. economy.

Apple, the world’s biggest company by market capitalization, said Wednesday it will contribute $75 billion of that amount through investments in American manufacturing, planned capital expenditures and what it called a “record” tax payment after it repatriates overseas profits. 

The company said it expects to pay roughly $38 billion on its foreign earnings, as required by $1.5 trillion tax overhaul signed into law by President Trump in December. Apple has roughly roughly $252 billion in cash held in foreign accounts.

While Apple is likely to return some of its overseas money to shareholders, Wednesday’s announcement is designed to be a show of faith in the U.S. — the company’s largest market. The public show of support to the U.S. also helps the optics of a company that will still continue to make most of its iPhones, iPads and other gadgets in factories located in China and other faraway countries that offer cheaper labor.

 “We believe deeply in the power of American ingenuity, and we are focusing our investments in areas where we can have a direct impact on job creation and job preparedness,” CEO Tim Cook said in a statement. “We have a deep sense of responsibility to give back to our country and the people who help make our success possible.”  

Companies that bring back money stashed overseas this year will be taxed at a 15.5 percent rate, below the new 21 percent rate for U.S. corporate profits under the new law. As a whole, corporate America has an estimated $2.6 trillion in overseas cash, with most of that concentrated in the technology industry.

Apple, which has 84,000 employees in the U.S., said it would meet its goal of adding 20,000 jobs by building a new corporate campus and through hiring at existing facilities. The new location will be announced later this year. It will initially house employees who provide technical support for customers.

Apple is also expanding a fund it launched last year to create manufacturing jobs in the U.S. and drive innovation, boosting investment from $1 billion to $5 billion. Part of those funds have already been funneled into projects with leading manufacturers in Kentucky and Texas, Apple said. 

Shortly after his election in 2016, President Trump met with Cook and other tech company executives to urge them to create more jobs in the U.S. But the Apple executive has had a generally frosty relationship with Mr. Trump, criticizing him last year over his handling of the deadly protest in Charlottesville, Virginia.

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