Employees line up gift boxes of beauty products for sale at a Wal-Mart Stores Inc. store in Los Angeles, California.
Patrick T. Fallon | Bloomberg | Bloomberg | Getty Images
walmart announced Tuesday it will raise the minimum wage for store employees to $14 an hour.
Beginning in early March, employees will be paid between $14 and $19 an hour. They now earn between $12 and $18 an hour, according to Walmart spokeswoman Anne Hatfield.
The move is expected to push average U.S. wages for retailers above $17.50, Walmart US CEO John Furner said in a note to employees Tuesday.
About 340,000 employees will get pay increases from the move, Hatfield said. That’s about a quarter of Walmart’s 1.3 million workers, who drive trucks on site, pack online purchases, and service in stores.
The retail giant, the country’s largest private employer with 1.6 million employees, is raising salaries as part of annual salary increases for its employees. Despite thousands of job cuts at prominent tech companies, banks and media organizations, retailers continue to grapple with a tight labor market.
In an employee memo, Furner said the pay increase will be part of many employees’ annual raises. Some of these pay increases will also apply to store employees working in parts of the country where the labor market is more competitive, the company said.
Walmart also has other perks to attract and retain employees. Farner said they are adding more college degrees and certificates to their Live Better U program, which covers tuition and fees for part-time and full-time workers. We are looking for employees to increase jobs and become truck drivers. This job can pay up to $110,000 in the first year.
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