In the wake of the Walmart strike and calls for a Walmart boycott, we've heard a lot about how little Walmart pays its workers, and how much the company costs the taxpayer in food stamps and Medicaid. But does the mega-store really hurt poorer Americans? Reason Magazine's Peter Suderman sent this impressively-logical series of tweets arguing that Walmart actually benefits those with lower incomes.
1. Walmart's customer base is heavily concentrated in the bottom income quintile, which spends heavily on food.
2. The bottom income quintile spends about 25 percent of income on food compared to just 3.5 percent for the top quintile.
3. So the benefits of Walmart's substantially lower prices to the lowest earning cohort are huge, especially on food.
5. Walmart's wages are about average for retail. Not amazing. But not the worst either.
6. Paying Walmart's workers more would mean the money has to come from somewhere. But where?
7. Erase the Walmart CEO's entire salary, and you can raise average hourly wages by just a penny or so.
8. Erase the entire Walton family fortune and you get an average $1/hour boost to Walmart workers.
9. Raise prices to pay for increased wages and you cut into the store's huge low-price benefits for the poor. It's regressive.
You can read the full series of tweets at Via Business Insider.