MORE TAX BILL FALLOUT: WALMART CLOSES DOZENS OF SAM’S CLUB STORES ACROSS THE COUNTRY

January 11, 2018

Further revealing that the Trump-Republican tax bill is designed to benefit the largest corporations and their shareholders, not working Americans, Walmart today announced it is closing 63 Sam’s Club stores around the country. Despite initial press releases touting short-term worker benefits, the real response of companies like Walmart to the Republican tax bill has been to ensure that its already high-paid executives and wealthy shareholders reap the overwhelming benefit, leaving thousands of workers standing in the cold without jobs.

Reuters: Wal-Mart's Sam's Club To Shut Stores After "Review." “Sam’s Club, a unit of Wal-Mart Stores Inc , closed a series of stores following a review, the membership-only store chain said in a tweet on Thursday. The tweet came after a series of reports from local news outlets said some Sam's Club stores were closed abruptly on Thursday, with employees learning of the move as they arrived for work.  Earlier in the day Wal-Mart said it would raise entry-level wages for U.S. hourly employees to $11 an hour in February as it benefits from last month’s major overhaul of the U.S. tax code.” [Reuters, 1/11/18]

Business Insider: Walmart Is Abruptly Closing 63 Sam's Club Stores And Laying Off Thousands Of Workers. “Walmart is closing 63 Sam's Club stores across the US, the company told Business Insider. Several stores were abruptly closed Thursday. In some cases, employees were not informed of the closures prior to showing up to work on Thursday. Instead, they learned that their store would be closing when they found the store's doors locked and a notice announcing the closure, according to reports.” [Business Insider, 1/11/18]

TODAY’S ANNOUNCEMENT FROM WALMART FOLLOWS A $20 BILLION STOCK BUYBACK IN 2017

“The company announces a new $20 billion share repurchase program to replace its existing authorization and expects to utilize the new authorization over an approximate two-year period.” [Press Release, 10/10/17

WEALTHY TOP WALMART EXECUTIVES ARE SET TO BE KEY BENEFICIARIES FROM STOCK BUYBACKS – AND THEY ALREADY MAKE TENS OF MILLIONS A YEAR

 2017 CEO Stock Awards: $15,224,706

2017 Total CEO Compensation: $22,352,143 [Walmart 2017 Proxy Statement, P. 74]

THIS WAGE ANNOUNCEMENT – ALLEGEDLY SPURRED BY THE TAX BILL – FOLLOWS EXTREMELY SIMILAR ANNOUNCEMENTS IN RECENT YEARS – BEFORE PASSAGE OF THE TAX BILL

 2016: More Than One Million Walmart Associates to Receive Pay Increase in 2016

2015: Wal-Mart, under pressure, boosts minimum U.S. wage to $9 an hour

NO WONDER THE AMERICAN PEOPLE STILL OVERWHELMINGLY OPPOSE THE GOP TAX SCAM

Gallup: Americans Remain Negative on Tax Bill After Its Passage. “A majority of Americans continue to disapprove of the nation's new tax reform law after its late December passage, just as they did a month ago when it was still being debated.” [Gallup, 1/10/18]

Quinnipiac Poll: “The Wealthy Will Benefit Most From This Plan, 66 Percent Of American Voters Say.” “Voters disapprove 52 - 32 percent of the recently enacted Republican tax plan…The wealthy will benefit most from this plan, 66 percent of American voters say, while 22 percent say the middle class will benefit most and 4 percent say low income people will benefit most.” [Quinnipiac, 1/11/18]