Walmart announced a $20 Billion stock buyback yesterday.
From Business Insider: Walmart is using the oldest trick in the book to boost its stock price
$20 Billion is a whole lot of money.
- It’s equal to almost $8,700 per full-time Walmart employee.[i]
- It’s more than three times what taxpayers spend each year on health care, food stamps and other forms of public assistance for Walmart employees.[ii]
- It’s 50% more than Walmart’s total profits last year.[iii]
- It’s equal to about half of the company’s total long-term debt.[iv]
And Walmart directors have decided to spend all that money buying back shares of their own corporation’s stock. Which doesn’t really do anything other than condense corporate ownership.
So rather than paying better wages to employees, or allowing more employees access to the company’s health insurance, or hiring more employees, or even just paying off corporate debt… Walmart directors want to spend $20 billion on reducing the number of shares of stock.
It’s all a question of priorities. And condensing corporate ownership has been one of Walmart’s priorities for at least a decade. Walmart has “repurchased” almost 30% of its shares since 2005.[v]
While taxpayers have been paying billions of dollars each year in public assistance to Walmart employees.
While Walmart employees have had to ask for public assistance, just to make ends meet for their families.
As the “Fight for Fifteen” movement[vi] continues, it’s worth asking:
If Walmart can afford $20 billion for more stock buybacks, why isn’t it already paying better wages to employees?
[iii] “net income” https://finance.yahoo.com/quote/WMT/financials?p=WMT