But many employers also reward their workforce by allowing them to purchase shares of 股票 in the company at a discount. Stock compensation comes in many forms, and is popular with both employers and employees for many reasons. However, it does pose some potential drawbacks (to which the former employees of Enron and Worldcom can readily attest).
Although the particulars vary from one form of 股票 compensation to another, the basic idea behind most forms is to provide workers with the means to buy company 股票 which they can then sell.
How the employee realizes compensation from company 股票 generally proceeds via two or three basic steps:
The process of providing 股票 compensation usually begins by granting outright shares of 股票 to employees or the right to purchase it. The employer issues an agreement giving employees the option to purchase either a specific number or a dollar amount of shares according to a set schedule or other conditions as set forth in the plan. The option to buy the 股票 becomes active on a specific date known as the grant date.
If the option to buy company 股票 is granted, the 股票 can then be purchased according to the plan rules, and the period during which this is permissible often lasts for several years until the opportunity is rescinded on the expiration date. Most option plans allow the employee to buy the 股票 either at a specific predetermined price, or at the price it was trading at on the grant date. This means that the employee will be able to buy the 股票 at a discount if it has risen in price by the time the option is exercised.
这是员工清算计划中获得的股份的时候– either via exercising their option to purchase, or by being granted shares outright. Most employees can hold 股票 as long as they want, and in some case, may not sell it until retirement. This is because the value of employee 股票 options can grow substantially.
例如，可以允许雇员购买其雇主’s 股票 at $45 a share – its price on the grant date. But this option could last for 10 years, during which time the 股票 might rise to $90 per share. The employee can then realize an instant $45 per share gain simply by exercising the option to buy at $45 and then selling the 股票 in the open market.
Employee 股票 compensation is often awarded according to a vesting schedule similar to that used for company retirement and profit-sharing plans, and are thus used by employers to encourage tenure within the company. Other restrictions or conditions are also often placed upon stock options, such as their forfeiture if the employee goes to work for a competitor.
The rules for taxation of 股票 compensation vary with each type of plan. The rules for some plans are much more complex than others, but in general, most employees will realize at least some income upon exercise of their options, and the rest upon the sale of the 股票 – unless the options are awarded inside a qualified plan. Employees are seldom taxed upon the grant of an option unless the option itself (not the 股票) is actively traded and has a readily ascertainable fair market value.
Some gains that are realized from 股票 option exercise may be reported as compensation income, while other types of gains are classified as either short or long-term 资本收益. Any restrictions that are placed upon the exercise or sale of the 股票 by the company can also delay taxation in many cases until the restrictions have been lifted, such as when the employee satisfies the vesting schedule in the plan.
These plans can also be labeled as qualified or non-qualified, although these terms should not be confused with retirement plans that are labeled as qualified or non-qualified, where the former type of plan is subject to ERISA guidelines while the latter is not. In general, qualified 股票 option plans do not immediately tax the employee upon the difference between the exercise and market price of the 股票 being purchased, while non-qualified plans do.
Stock options mean additional compensation in the form of discounted 股票 purchases, which can be redeemed either now or later at an instant profit. In many cases, the options themselves come to have tangible value, particularly if the employee is able to exercise the option at a price far below where it is currently trading. Workers can also benefit from knowing that their efforts are at least indirectly contributing to the rise in the value of their investment.
Employers reward their employees with 股票 for two main reasons. The first is that it is cheaper and easier for the company to simply issue shares of 股票 rather than pay cash to employees. The second is that this form of compensation can serve to increase employee motivation; a workforce that owns a piece of its employer gets to share directly in the profits of the company at large in addition to receiving their weekly paychecks. This can improve employee morale and loyalty, and reduce turnover in the workforce –以及创建另一组购买公司股票的投资者。
公司的价值’s 股票 declines, then so do the values of the options or shares. Those who have accumulated substantial amounts of 股票 or options can see their net worths decline sharply in very short periods of time in some cases, such as during severe market downturns and corporate upheaval.
Also, the immediate sale of a large number of shares purchased with 股票 options will lead to substantial short-term 资本收益, which can drastically increase the employee’该年度的税单（除非股票是在ESOP计划内出售的，该计划是一种延税，合格的计划，类似于 401k）
When company 股票 loses value, it can leave employees feeling discouraged and lead to reduced productivity and morale. Depending on the reason for the 股票 value’s decline, the lack of employee motivation could drag the company, and thereby its 股票, down even further.
This is the simpler of the two forms of employee 股票 compensation that come in the form of an option. These options are also referred to as non-qualified 股票 options due to their tax treatment, which is not as favorable as that accorded to their statutory cousins. Non-statutory options usually require employees to immediately recognize the difference between the exercise price and the market price of the 股票 option upon exercise. This amount will be reported as a short-term taxable gain. Non-statutory 股票 options are offered primarily to rank-and-file employees of corporations as a means of achieving a share of ownership in the company.
Also known as incentive (or qualified) 股票 options, statutory 股票 options are typically only offered to key employees and corporate executives as a special type of compensation. Statutory 股票 options can be exercised and sold on a more tax-advantaged basis than non-statutory shares because no income is recognized by the exercise of these options. Income is never recognized with these options, in fact, until the 股票 is actually sold. However, the income from these options can sometimes trigger the Alternative Minimum Tax.
Many corporate executives and insiders who are awarded company 股票 are only allowed to sell the 股票 under certain conditions in order to comply with regulations aimed at curbing 内幕交易, such as requiring the executive to wait for a certain period of time before selling. This is known as restricted 股票. RSUs, on the other hand, are a device to grant shares of 股票 or their cash value at a future date according to a vesting schedule without conveying actual shares or cash until the vesting requirement is satisfied.
This is perhaps the simplest type of employee 股票 purchase program. ESPPs are funded via payroll deduction on an after-tax basis. The employer diverts a portion of the employee’s compensation into an ESPP account that accumulates money from the time of offer or enrollment until the purchase date. Most ESPP plans allow employees to purchase their company 股票 at up to a 15% discount from the current market price. These plans can be qualified, which allows for long-term 资本收益 treatment under certain conditions, or non-qualified, depending on plan type and how long the 股票 is held before it is sold.
This is a type of qualified plan that is funded entirely with company 股票. ESOPs are often used by closely held businesses as a means of providing a liquid market for the company 股票 on a tax-advantaged basis; owners can place their shares of the company inside the plan and then sell these shares back to the company at retirement. These are perhaps the best plans available from a tax perspective because income from the sale 股票 is never recognized until it is distributed at retirement, just as with any other type of qualified plan.
在2002年安然（Enron）和世通（Worldcom）崩溃之后，监管机构对这种退休计划资金进行了严格的审查。尽管许多雇主仍在退休计划中向员工发放公司股份，但员工需要确保他们有足够的能力 多元化的 根据其风险承受能力和投资目标在其退休投资组合中。安然（Enron）和世通（Worldcom）的员工可以痛苦地证明将整个退休投资组合放在一个公司中的愚蠢行为。
Phantom股票之所以这样命名，是因为可能没有发行或转让的实际股票。这种类型的股票通常适合使高管和关键员工受益，他们可能需要满足某些要求才能符合计划的条件。的“stock” is often paid to an employee in the form of so-called performance units that represent shares of the actual 股票. Employees receive many of the financial benefits of 股票 ownership without actually owning the 股票. SARs usually pay employees the value of the growth in the company 股票 over a predetermined period of time. This payment may be in cash, or it can be done with actual shares in some cases.
股票补偿是雇主和雇员均可使用的最通用的付款方式之一。但是，许多工人面临的挑战之一是了解他们的公司’s 股票 can or should fit into their own financial plans. Although company 股票 can often provide substantial gains over time, it can also create taxable events, in some cases, even when no cash is realized.
To learn how your 股票 compensation program works, including how and when you’将对所得征税，请咨询您的人事部门或 财务顾问.