walmart announced a Tuesday base salary increase for its employees, bringing the median hourly wage to “more than” $17.50 an hour.
“We are proud to continue to invest in Walmart’s legacy by introducing new job openings and increasing wages,” John Furner, president and CEO of Walmart US, wrote in a note to employees.
“Walmart’s hourly wages vary by region and role and range in the following ranges: For store sizes (e.g., Supercenter, Neighborhood Market supermarket size): $14 to $32 per hour,” the site says.
Walmart’s 1.7 million employees in the US also make it the country’s largest private employer.
A Walmart spokesperson told CNBC that prior to this change, store employees were making $12 to $18 an hour. Now the range will jump, to between $14 and $19 per hour. The change will be evident in March 2 paychecks for employees, Furner wrote.
Walmart is one of many retail companies struggling to hire, as CNN noted — there are currently about 30,000 vacancies. This has led to minor wage competition. Amazon announced small pay increases for warehouse workers in October.
However, the retail sector lost jobs in the November 2022 job postings and turnover rate reportwhile the overall labor market remained robust.
Gregory Daco, chief economist at EY Parthenon, told CNBC that it’s easier for companies like Walmart to avoid the large layoffs currently plaguing the technology sector due to attrition, i.e. high turnover.
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But Walmart raising its wages has a ripple effect, as it often functions as a local “minimum wage,” as CNN noted.
“Hourly workers are still hard to come by and companies continue to compete for them by raising wages,” Andy Challenger, senior vice president of the employment agency Challenger, Gray & Christmas, told CNN.