|12 Months Ended|
Sep. 30, 2019
|Disclosure of Compensation Related Costs, Share-based Payments [Abstract]|
At September 30, 2019, 0.9 million shares remained available for grants under our 2017 Equity Incentive Plan. We typically issue new shares in satisfying our obligations under our stock plans.
We grant equity awards to officers, employees and directors in the form of restricted stock units (RSUs). RSUs issued generally vest ratably over or five years. The fair value of the RSUs, based on our stock price at the grant date, is expensed in equal installments over the vesting period. For the fiscal years ended September 30, 2019, 2018 and 2017, compensation expense recognized related to RSUs was $20.8 million, $20.2 million and $21.4 million, respectively. All individuals who are granted RSUs also receive dividend-equivalent payments in the form of additional RSUs. However, until the shares are issued, they have no voting rights and may not be bought or
sold. In the event that an award is forfeited, the dividend-equivalent payments received by the holder with respect to that award are also forfeited. We estimate our stock award forfeitures as we expense each award.
A summary of our RSU activity for the year ended September 30, 2019, is as follows:
In addition to the non-vested shares, certain directors and employees held approximately 0.6 million vested awards whose issuance has been deferred as of September 30, 2019.
The weighted-average grant-date fair value of RSUs granted in the years ended September 30, 2018 and 2017, was $64.33 and $53.63, respectively. The total fair value of RSUs which vested during the years ended September 30, 2019, 2018 and 2017 was $27.4 million, $30.3 million and $24.9 million, respectively. As of September 30, 2019, the total remaining unrecognized compensation cost related to unvested RSUs was $38.8 million. This expense is expected to be realized over the next four years, with a weighted average life of 1.5 years.
Prior to fiscal year 2008, we granted stock options to certain employees. These were granted at exercise prices equal to the fair market value of our common stock at the date of grant, vested over a period of four years and expired ten years after the date of the grant. No compensation expenses related to stock options were recorded in any of the years shown. By September 30, 2017, all stock options issued had either been exercised or expired and no new options have been issued. The following table summarizes information pertaining to the stock options vested and exercised for the years presented (in thousands):
The total income tax benefit recognized in the consolidated statements of operations for share-based compensation arrangements was $9.9 million, $8.7 million and $15.0 million for the fiscal years ended September 30, 2019, 2018 and 2017, respectively.
Employees are permitted to forfeit a certain number of shares to cover their personal tax liability, with the Company making tax payments to the relevant authorities. These payments are reported in the consolidated statements of cash flows as financing cash flows. During the three years ending September 30, 2019, 2018 and 2017, we incurred liabilities related to these forfeitures of $10.6 million, $8.7 million and $8.7 million, respectively.
Stock purchase programs
Under a resolution adopted in June 2018, the Board of Directors authorized the purchase, at management's discretion, of up to an aggregate of $200 million of our common stock. This resolution superseded a similar authorization from August 2015. The resolution also authorizes the use of option exercise proceeds for the purchases of our common stock. During the years ended September 30, 2019, 2018 and 2017, we purchased 0.7 million, 1.1 million and 0.6 million common shares at a cost of $46.8 million, $67.6 million and $28.9 million, respectively. At September 30, 2019, $146.0 million remained available for future stock purchases.
The entire disclosure for compensation-related costs for equity-based compensation, which may include disclosure of policies, compensation plan details, allocation of equity compensation, incentive distributions, equity-based arrangements to obtain goods and services, deferred compensation arrangements, employee stock ownership plan details and employee stock purchase plan details.
Reference 1: http://fasb.org/us-gaap/role/ref/legacyRef