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Amazon Employees

How We Work with Amazon Employees and the Restricted Stock Units

With Atkinson Wealth Strategies being located here in the Pacific Northwest we have first hand experience in the massive growth of Amazon. With the stock price breaking $1,000 a share many employees have started asking themselves if their investment strategy is right for them, and what they should be doing with their RSUs.

Typical questions that Atkinson Wealth Strategies receives from Amazon employees include:

  • How much should I contribute to my Amazon 401(k) plan?
  • What are the best investment options for me?
  • What kind of retirement plan is best for me? What benefits does Amazon offer?
  • How can I maximize my Amazon Restricted Stock Units (RSUs) in a tax-efficient manner?
  • How do my Amazon investments and portfolio work with my spouses?
  • My Amazon RSUs are now worth a lot of money, what is my next step?
  • I just was recruited by amazon, I want to make sure my old 401(k) is working best for my new situation.
  • When does my Amazon 401(k) plan vest and what does that mean for me?
  • What is my RSU vesting schedule?
  • When can I afford to retire according to my goals and investment objectives?
  • How do I retire early?
  • I have an old 401(k) how do I make my allocation work with my new Amazon one?
  • Am I on the right track to meet my short and long term financial goals?
  • How do I set up a ROTH IRA?
  • My spouse and I make too much to contribute to a ROTH. What should I be doing?
  • How to I maximize my outside investment accounts?
  • I don’t plan on being at Amazon for my entire career. How does this work into my Financial Plan?
  • I am max funding my 401(k), is that really what I should be doing for my situation?

To answer these we use a three meeting approach which covers the following:

1.) Discovery: Before we get down to crunching numbers, we’ll talk about the things that are most important to you in retirement; family, community, pastimes, church. We’ll ask a lot of questions about what you’re really thinking, feeling, worried about; your experiences with money; and what you’ve accomplished so far. Together we’ll figure out where you are now.

2.) Planning: Based on what we discuss in the Discovery phase, we will assess your personal situation, gauge where you are now relative to your life goals and priorities, and consider what gaps exist. We will weigh the financial implications of each goal we discuss and construct the framework for a plan that supports them.

3.) Solutions: A benefit of holistic planning is that it provides a comprehensive view of all areas of your financial life. During this phase, we will recommend specific solutions to address each of your goals. This is where we implement your customized plan.

Contact us today for a free consultation!


Frequently Asked Questions:

1.) What Is an RSU?

A Restricted Stock Unit (RSU) is a right to receive a share of Amazon.com
common stock after you’ve satisfied the vesting period.


2.) Who Is Eligible to Receive RSUs?


Generally, all full-time Amazon employees in the United States are eligible to
receive RSU awards.


3.) When Are RSUs Awarded?


In general, all eligible Amazon employees receive an RSU award at the time they are
hired. Additional RSU awards, if any, are determined on an annual basis in April.


4.) What Is an Award Agreement?


The RSU Award Agreement is a legal document that describes your award’s
terms and conditions, such as the number of RSUs awarded and the vesting
requirements. When it’s time to review and accept your agreement, it will be
posted to your online RSU account and you will receive a notification email
from Amazon’s stock plan administrator Morgan Stanley.


5.) How Many RSUs Will I Receive?


RSU awards are based upon job level. For certain job levels and positions, other
factors, such as an employee’s compensation range and the results of annual
performance reviews, may also be considered.


6.) What Is a Vesting Period?


The vesting period is an amount of time you must work full-time as an Amazon
employee for your RSUs to become Amazon.com shares. For example, if
you were awarded 10 RSUs with a two-year vesting period on April 1, 2013,
the vesting period for those 10 RSUs would end on May 15, 2015. Generally,
to satisfy the vesting requirements, you can have no breaks in service during
the vesting period and you must be a full-time employee at the time the RSUs
vest. Information about breaks in service is located on Inside Amazon. Vesting
periods will be stated on your Amazon RSU Award Agreement. 

March 1st, 2018