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Always Low Wages? Wal-Mart’s Other Choices

Posted By Barry Ritholtz On December 18, 2013 @ 8:15 am In Earnings,Retail,Wages & Income | Comments Disabled

Yesterday, we looked at the benefit to McDonald’s [1] of having its workers subsidized by state and federal aid. Today, its Wal-Mart’s turn. Recall our discussion last month on the related subject of “How McDonald’s and Wal-Mart Became Welfare Queens [2].” We learned that employees of these two companies are often the largest recipients of aid in their states.

McDonald’s recently found itself in the spotlight courtesy of its “McResource [3]” line — the company help line that helps its poverty-level, full time employees enroll in various welfare programs. A recording of that McResource line [4] sparked outrage, driving this issue into public view.

More recently, Wal-Mart’s holiday public-relations headache began when a Canton, Ohio, store decided to hold a food drive for needy local families for the holidays. What made this a PR nightmare was that the needy families were full time Wal-Mart employees who were working in the store holding a food drive.

Thus, our questions over the arc of these columns about some of the largest retailers in America — Wal-Mart is the single largest private employer in the country; McDonald’s, the largest fast food chain – are simply this:

Continues here [5]

Article printed from The Big Picture: http://www.ritholtz.com/blog

URL to article: http://www.ritholtz.com/blog/2013/12/always-low-wages-wal-marts-other-choices/

URLs in this post:

[1] benefit to McDonald’s: http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-12-17/the-minimum-wage-and-mcdonald-s-welfare.html

[2] How McDonald’s and Wal-Mart Became Welfare Queens: http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-11-13/how-mcdonald-s-and-wal-mart-became-welfare-queens.html

[3] McResource: http://www.businessweek.com/articles/2013-10-25/a-help-line-voice-saying-what-mcdonalds-wont-fast-food-workers-need-aid

[4] recording of that McResource line: http://lowpayisnotok.org/mcvideo/

[5] Continues here: http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-12-18/always-low-wages-wal-mart-s-other-choices.html

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