WalMart Is Firing 1,000 Corporate Workers

One day after Wal-Mart surprised the nation when on the same day it publicly announced it is raising its starting hourly wage to $11/hour, expanding employee benefits and offering worker bonuses of up to $1000 while at the same time it quietly closed  63 Sam's Club stores, the WSJ reports that Wal-Mart is preparing to hand out a thousand pink slips at its headquarters. This in addition to the thousands of part-time jobs that will be affected by the mass Sam's Club closures.

The giant retailer, which employs more than 1.5 million people in the U.S., plans to cut more than 1,000 corporate jobs, according to the WSJ.

The job cuts are expected to be broad based, focused on workers primarily at the company’s headquarters, the people said. The cuts are expected to be completed by the end of the company’s fiscal year on Jan. 31, they added.

“We’ve been looking at our structure for some time as we explore ways to operate more effectively,” a Wal-Mart spokesman said, without confirming that job cuts are planned this month.

As we reported yesterday, according to Gordon Haskett analyst Chuck Grom, prior to today's layoffs, Wal-Mart's wage investment is just 15% of the tax gain. Grom said that "Wal-Mart may see tax rate of ~23% in FY19 (year ended Jan. 2019) vs current 32%, which would provide $2 billion windfall". As such the "labor investment of ~$300 million represents just 15% of total; assumes a similar amount will go toward investments in price."

Well, make that under $300 million after today's layoffs.

Meanwhile, for those wondering what the company will use the rest of the money on: why higher dividend payments and accelerated buybacks,of course, according to Grom.

Oh, and free advertising: "with WMT being first retailer "out of the gate," it should get some “free media." Although a few more mass layoff announcements, and the free publicity may not be so sterling.

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Moon Kil Woong 6 months ago Contributor's comment

Sadly higher wages drive the push towards increased efficiency and automation. That drives a decrease in jobs. In economics things have a trade off. Those pushing for higher salaries across the board better be ready for the potential fallout which tends to be job loses and inflation. Growing the real economy is harder than just demanding wage increases. People need to read economics books before proposing overly simplistic solutions.

Walmart's actions are a good case in point.

Alexis Renault 6 months ago Member's comment

That makes a lot of sense. Are there any books in particular you would recommend?