Walmart will raise minimum hourly wage to at least $14 for store employees
Walmart will raise its minimum hourly wage for employees at its U.S. stores beginning next month, the company said Tuesday.
Store employee starting pay will be between $14 and $19 per hour beginning in early March, Walmart spokesperson Anne Hatfield told USA TODAY in an email. Those wages are up from $12 to $18 per hour, she said.
In addition to regular annual pay increases for associates, the company will make "targeted investments in starting rates for thousands of stores, to ensure we have attractive pay in the markets we operate," John Furner, president and CEO of Walmart U.S., said in a note to employees. He said the company expects its average hourly wage in the U.S. to pass $17.50 as a result of the increases.
Hatfield said 340,000 employees would see wage increases as part of the move.
"At Walmart, we know our people make the difference," Furner said. "And as you continue to focus on your customers, we’re focused on investing in you – our store associates – through higher wages and new opportunities to gain the skills to serve tomorrow’s customers and grow a career with Walmart."
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The move comes after Walmart competitor Amazon hiked its average starting pay for front-line workers to over $19 per hour from $18 in October. The company's U.S. minimum wage is $15.
When will the Walmart pay raises take effect?
Furner said employees will see the pay inc reflected in March 2 paychecks.
How many employees does Walmart have?
Walmart had about 2.3 million associates across the globe at the end of the 2022 fiscal year, with about 1.7 million in the U.S., according to its website.
What other changes is Walmart making?
The company announced other changes, including the addition of a higher-paying team lead role in its Auto Care Centers and moving its ACC tech job "to a higher pay-band that reflects the special skills needed for the role and its importance to our business," Furner said.
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Walmart is also adding college degrees and certificates to its education program, Live Better U, which covers tuition and fees for part-time and full-time workers, and broadening its Associate-to-Driver Program, which helps employees become truck drivers. Walmart truck drivers can earn as much $110,000 during their first year on the job, according to Furner's note.
Hiring in the U.S. slowed modestly in December as employers added 223,000 jobs to close out an otherwise booming year, possibly foreshadowing the deeper pullback and recession that many economists expect in 2023.
Contributing: Paul Davidson, USA TODAY