In a couple of weeks, employees at Amazon — even seasonal workers — will see their wages jump to $15 an hour, up from $11 currently.
The Nov. 1 move is sure to send ripples throughout the retail industry. Other retail giants, prior to Amazon’s decision, had already announced hourly hikes. Target raised its rate from $11 to $12 an hour with the goal of reaching $15 by 2020. In January, Walmart raised its minimum from $9 to $11 an hour.
The new Amazon minimum wage, which more than doubles the federally mandated rate of $7.25 an hour, comes at a price: Employees will no longer be given a stock purchase option and bonuses will be ended as well.
The $15-an-hour movement already has McDonald’s embroiled in a legal tussle over whether it is a joint employer responsible for the wage-and-hour and employment decisions of its franchisees. That lingering issue still has not been resolved and could send even more ripples through the corporate world.
According to a National Employment Law Project report, six states and 17 cities and counties currently have legislated minimum increases that will reach $12 to $15 an hour over the next few years.