Three Jets, One Helicopter Now On Market
Faced with mounting pressure from lawmakers, and growing
disdain from the (arguably misinformed) general public, on
Wednesday Bank of America announced it would sell off three of its
corporate jets, as well as a helicopter operated by
recently-acquired Merrill Lynch.
BofA is just the latest of several companies that received
taxpayer-funded bailout money, and have since been
coerced to sell off their corporate jet fleets. The Associated
Press reports Bank of America has received $45 billion in federal
"As part of an ongoing cost reduction effort we have been
scaling back on our use of corporate aircraft including selling
three aircraft we own and the Merrill Lynch helicopter," said Bank
of America spokesman Scott Silvestri.
The spokesman declined to say how many aircraft BofA still owns.
FAA records showed the Charlotte, NC-based bank owned nine aircraft
as of last year.
BofA's decision comes just over a week after
Citigroup reneged on its plans to take delivery of a new,
$50 million Dassault Falcon 7X, after the White House
decried what they perceived as an extravagant purchase for a
company that, like Bank of America, had received billions in
federal bailout money under the Troubled Asset Relief Program.
Largely unmentioned in that rhetoric was the fact Citi was also
selling two older Falcon 900EX aircraft, listing at $27 million
apiece... presumably to cover the cost of the single, more
Banking analyst Bert Ely noted that despite the perception of
business jets as a "perk," often companies use the planes simply
because it makes sense for them to do so.
"They are offices in the sky," Ely said. "They all say it's for
security purposes, and while true, corporate jets also represent a
significant costs savings for executives. Time is money."
Someone get that guy a larger microphone...