|6 Months Ended|
Jun. 30, 2021
|Income Tax Disclosure [Abstract]|
|INCOME TAXES||INCOME TAXES
Our effective tax rate decreased to 22.1% in the second quarter of 2021 from 25.0% in the same period of 2020 (22.5% year to date compared to 24.2% in 2020). The recognition in income tax of excess tax benefits related to share-based compensation reduced our effective rate by 0.3% in the second quarter of 2021 but had no impact in the same period of 2020 (0.8% year to date compared to 0.3% in 2020). Changes in the proportion of our taxable income in certain jurisdictions relative to total pre-tax income favorably impacted our effective tax rate in the second quarter of 2021 relative to the prior year. Additionally, our effective tax rate was favorably impacted in the second quarter of 2021 by having less expense recorded related to net changes in our uncertain tax positions.
As discussed in our Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2020, we have recognized liabilities for uncertain tax positions. We reevaluate these uncertain tax positions on a quarterly basis. A number of years may elapse before an uncertain tax position is audited and ultimately settled. It is difficult to predict the ultimate outcome or the timing of resolution for uncertain tax positions. It is reasonably possible that the amount of unrecognized tax benefits could significantly increase or decrease within the next twelve months. However, an estimate of the range of reasonably possible outcomes cannot be made. Items that may cause changes to unrecognized tax benefits include the timing of interest deductions and the allocation of income and expense between tax jurisdictions. These changes could result from the settlement of ongoing litigation, the completion of ongoing examinations, the expiration of statutes of limitations or other unforeseen circumstances.
In the first quarter of 2021, we recognized an income tax expense of $788 million related to pre-tax mark-to-market income of $3.3 billion on our defined benefit pension and postretirement plans. This income tax expense was generated at a higher average tax rate than the U.S. federal statutory tax rate because it included the effect of U.S. state and local taxes.
As discussed in note 18, we recognized pre-tax transformation strategy costs of $116 million in the second quarter compared to $112 million in the same period of 2020 ($234 million year to date compared to $157 million in the prior year). As a result, we recorded an additional income tax benefit of $28 million in the second quarter compared to $29 million in 2020 ($56 million year to date compared to $39 million in the prior year). This year-to-date benefit was generated at a higher average tax rate than the U.S. federal statutory tax rate primarily due to the effect of U.S. state and local taxes and foreign taxes.
As discussed in note 6, in the second quarter of 2021 we completed the divestiture of UPS Freight and recorded a pre-tax gain of $101 million ($35 million year to date). As a result, we recorded additional income tax expense of $24 million in the second quarter ($8 million year to date). This income tax expense was generated at a higher average tax rate than the U.S. federal statutory tax rate due to the effect of U.S. state and local taxes.
The entire disclosure for income taxes. Disclosures may include net deferred tax liability or asset recognized in an enterprise's statement of financial position, net change during the year in the total valuation allowance, approximate tax effect of each type of temporary difference and carryforward that gives rise to a significant portion of deferred tax liabilities and deferred tax assets, utilization of a tax carryback, and tax uncertainties information.
Reference 1: http://www.xbrl.org/2003/role/disclosureRef