|3 Months Ended
Mar. 31, 2017
The Corporation’s 2016 Comprehensive Capital Analysis and Review (CCAR) capital plan included requests to repurchase $5.0 billion of common stock over four quarters beginning in the third quarter of 2016, to repurchase common stock to offset the dilution resulting from certain equity-based compensation awards and to increase the quarterly common stock dividend from $0.05 per share to $0.075. On January 13, 2017, the Corporation announced a plan to repurchase $1.8 billion of common stock during the first half of 2017, to which the Federal Reserve did not object, in addition to the previously announced repurchases associated with the 2016 CCAR capital plan. During the three months ended March 31, 2017, the Corporation repurchased and retired 114 million shares of common stock, which reduced shareholders' equity by $2.7 billion.
The Corporation has warrants outstanding and exercisable to purchase 122 million shares of its common stock expiring on October 28, 2018, and warrants outstanding and exercisable to purchase 150 million shares of common stock expiring on January 16, 2019. These warrants were originally issued in connection with preferred stock issuances to the U.S. Department of the Treasury in 2009 and 2008, and are listed on the New York Stock Exchange. The exercise price of the warrants expiring on January 16, 2019 is subject to continued adjustment each time the quarterly cash dividend is in excess of $0.01 per common share to compensate the holders of the warrants for dilution resulting from an increased dividend. As a result of the Corporation’s first-quarter 2017 dividend of $0.075 per common share, the exercise price of the warrants expiring on January 16, 2019 was adjusted to $12.904 per share. The warrants expiring on October 28, 2018, which have an exercise price of $30.79 per share, also contain this anti-dilution provision except the adjustment is triggered only when the Corporation declares quarterly dividends at a level greater than $0.32 per common share.
During the three months ended March 31, 2017, in connection with employee stock plans, the Corporation issued approximately 60 million shares and repurchased approximately 24 million shares of its common stock to satisfy tax withholding obligations. At March 31, 2017, the Corporation had reserved 1.6 billion unissued shares of common stock for future issuances under employee stock plans, common stock warrants, convertible notes and preferred stock.
During the three months ended March 31, 2017, the Corporation declared $502 million of cash dividends on preferred stock. There were no issuances of preferred stock during the three months ended March 31, 2017.
Restricted Stock Units
During the three months ended March 31, 2017, the Corporation granted 85 million restricted stock unit (RSU) awards to certain employees under the Bank of America Corporation Key Employee Equity Plan. Generally, one-third of the RSUs vest on each of the first three anniversaries of the grant date provided that the employee remains continuously employed with the Corporation during that time. The RSUs granted during the three months ended March 31, 2017 were authorized to settle predominantly in shares of common stock of the Corporation, and will be expensed ratably over the vesting period, net of estimated forfeitures, for non-retirement eligible employees based on the grant-date fair value of the shares. Certain RSUs will be settled in cash or contain settlement provisions that subject these awards to variable accounting whereby compensation expense is adjusted to fair value based on changes in the share price of the Corporation's common stock up to the settlement date. For RSUs granted to employees who are retirement eligible or will become retirement eligible during the vesting period, the RSUs are expensed as of the grant date or ratably over the period from the grant date to the date the employee becomes retirement eligible, net of estimated forfeitures. For additional information, see Note 18 – Stock-based Compensation Plans to the Consolidated Financial Statements of the Corporation's 2016 Annual Report on Form 10-K.
Accounting for Share-based Compensation
The FASB issued new accounting guidance, which was effective on January 1, 2017, that simplifies certain aspects of the accounting for share-based payment transactions, including income tax consequences, classification of awards as either equity or liabilities and classification on the statement of cash flows. Under this new accounting guidance, all excess tax benefits and tax deficiencies on the delivery of share-based awards are recognized as discrete items in income tax expense or benefit in the statement of income. Previously such amounts were recorded in shareholders' equity. The adoption of this new accounting guidance resulted in a $222 million tax benefit upon the delivery of share-settled awards in the three months ended March 31, 2017.