Arthur J. Villasanta – Fourth Estate Contributor
Issaquah, WA, United States (4E) – Costco Wholesale Corporation, the world’s second largest retailer after Walmart, says it pays its employees more than Amazon, Walmart or any of its competitors.
Costco CFO Richard Galanti affirms the pay and benefits offered by Costco still remain ahead of the competition, Amazon’s recent move to hike its employees pay to $15 per hour notwithstanding. He noted that Costco raised its minimum wage to $14 from $13 following a tax-cut bill signed by Donald Trump in late 2017. He also said Costco provides raises every year, unlike many other retailers.
“Even though our starting wage is $14 to $14.50, an employee who’s been here over a number of years can get up into the equivalent of the mid-$40s to the mid-$50s on an hourly basis over time, on top of great health benefits,” said Galanti.
He noted that Costco’s average U.S. hourly wage is some $22.50, “which we believe dwarfs any other retail or retail-type entity out there on a base scale.”
Independent sources show that as of September, the hourly pay at Costco ranges from $10.61 to $25.86 an hour. Costco employees with the job title Pharmacist make the most, being paid an average hourly rate of $60.64. On the other hand, employees with the title Retail Cashier make the least with an average hourly rate of $8.32.
Before it announced the pay hikelast week, Amazon starting pay varied by location. It ranged from $10 an hour at a warehouse in Austin, Texas to $13.50 an hour in Robbinsville, New Jersey. In 2017, the median Amazon employee earned just under $28,500, according to company filings. Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos earned $1.7 million for the year..
The long-overdue pay raise for Amazon employees, many of whom have to rely on food stamps because of their low hourly Amazon wages, will take effect Nov.1 this year. The new minimum wage will benefit more than 250,000 Amazon employees (including part-time and temporary employees) and 100,000 seasonal employees. Some employees who already make $15 per hour will also see a pay increase.
Amazon and Bezos have faced intense criticism for the low hourly pay among Amazon employees. Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) last month introduced a bill called the “Stop Bezos Act” to tax corporations for every dollar their low-wage workers receive in government health-care benefits or food stamps.
In early September, Sanders attacked Amazon in a blistering tweet before filing the Stop Bezos Act that said: “Thousands of Amazon workers have to rely on food stamps, Medicaid and public housing to survive. That is what a rigged economy looks like. Tomorrow we will introduce a bill to end subsidies for low-wage employers.”
Article – All Rights Reserved.
Provided by FeedSyndicate