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Off the radar: U.S. CEOs' jet perks add millions to corporate tax bills

December 02, 2019 / Tim McLaughlin

As U.S. corporate jet use approaches pre-financial crisis levels and chief executives take an increasing number of personal trips on the company tab, many investors are being kept in the dark about the true cost of the perk. For the S&P 500 companies that pay for their CEOs to use corporate jets for private trips, the estimated median value of that flying climbed 11 percent last year to $107,286 from $96,532 in 2017, according to the latest available figures from compensation research firm Equilar Inc. That is up 27 percent from $84,636 in 2007, the year before the financial crisis. This is taxable income for executives. The estimates are often based on what a first-class seat would have cost on a commercial flight rather than on the true, much higher cost of using a corporate jet.