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Correction, says Wal-Mart, We Definitely Do Not Support Higher Wages

False alarm that nation's hugely profitable retailer and largest private employer thinks raising minimum wage a good idea

Jon Queally, staff writer

After a Walmart spokesman was quoted in the business pages of Bloomberg as saying the company was "looking" at the possibility of wage increases for its million+ workers, the company was quick to clarify the previous statement, declaring: "That does not mean we have changed our position."

Walmart, the nation's largest private employee, is notorious for paying poverty wages to its workeforce while refusing calls for better treatment of employees and aggressively blocking efforts at unionization.

According to the Guardian, "Walmart has 1.3 million US employees, about 4,000 of whom currently make either a state or federal minimum wage."

From Bloomberg:

Wal-Mart is weighing the impact of additional payroll costs against possibly attracting more consumer dollars to its stores, David Tovar, a company spokesman, said [...] in a telephone interview. Increasing the minimum wage means that some of the 140 million people who shop at the chain weekly would “now have additional income,” Tovar said.

Subsequently, and responding to questions about whether the company would support or resist a renewed push by Democrats on Capitol Hill and the Obama administration to raise the national minimum wage to $10.10, Tovar said: “That’s something we’re looking at. Whenever there’s debates, it’s not like we look once and make a decision. We look a few times from other angles.”

But, seemingly eager to back off even that mild statement, a second Walmart representative said Tovar's comments had been taken out of context and told the Guardian: "We are looking at it, as you would expect any large company. That does not mean we have changed our position.”


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