Amazon increases the minimum wage of U.S. workers

Members of "Fight For $15", mostly part-time cooks and cashiers, rallied on a sidewalk along Albany Avenue in West Hartford in front of a Dunkin' Donuts and McDonald's where they demanded the right to a union a $15 minimum wage.

Sanders has been one of Amazon's most vocal critics.

The company will now be advocating for an increase in the federal minimum wage, according to Jay Carney, senior VP of Amazon Global Corporate Affairs.

In June, Costco announced it was raising the minimum wage from $US13 to $US14.

Such is the case with the increase in the minimum wages of Amazon employees by around 2$ to 15$/hour (a bit more than 13 euros). In September, Sen. Bernie Sanders introduced the Stop Bad Employers by Zeroing Out Subsidies (BEZOS) Act.

According to Bloomberg, "Warehouse workers for the e-commerce giant in the USA were eligible in the past for monthly bonuses that could total hundreds of dollars per month as well as stock awards, said two people familiar with Amazon's pay policies. The current rate of $7.25 was set almost a decade ago", Jay Carney, Amazon's head of global corporate affairs, said in a prepared statement.

In the US, Amazon's move to increase minimum wages is expected to put pressure on Walmart, Target and others, whose minimum wages, as per reports, stand at $11 and $12, respectively.

"In that way, Amazon could be "weaponizing" policy, according to economist Michael Farren of the right-leaning think tank The Mercatus Center, which is generally against government regulation". Workers said managers at the warehouse also didn't know how it would work.

You read that right: in the U.S. it is entirely possible to work full-time for a highly-profitable company (in this case, one owned by the world's richest man) and still earn so little that you live below the federal poverty line. Below is a table of companies with large labour forces, modest wages (indication of part time work) and significant exposure in the United States and the UK, given that Amazon's initiative is being implemented on both sides of the Atlantic.

Amazon giveth and Amazon taketh away.

In addition, Amazon's technological forays into automation are further along than competitors, he said.

A number of retailers, including Amazon, Walmart, and Target have announced minimum wage hikes over the previous year as the battle for talent heats up.

"Amazon's business model is premised on constant innovation", Farren said. Once they start to raise pay in response to competitive forces, they typically lobby to push others to follow suit, to prevent other companies from undercutting them. Twenty-nine states have their own minimum wages higher than the federal $7.25.

Vanessa Coleman