Amazon raises minimum wage to $15 for USA employees

Inc. on Tuesday said it was raising the minimum wage it pays all USA workers to $15 an hour, a move that comes as the company faced increased criticism about pay and benefits for its warehouse workers.

And Walmart, the country's largest private-sector employer, which has more than 1 million USA workers, raised its minimum wage to $11 in February.

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The company said it also will start lobbying for an increase in the federal minimum wage, now at $7.25 an hour. Walmart announced back in January that it plans to raise its minimum wage to $11 per hour. Bernie Sanders and others, Amazon stressed that the number reflects its employees' pay worldwide; the median salary for a full time employee in the US, the company said, is $34,123 - a figure it said should be compared to other retailers. The proposed law says companies that don't pay a living wage should have to reimburse the tax authorities for the federal benefits paid out to their low-wage workers. "We're excited about this change and encourage our competitors and other large employers to join us". They have drawn a contrast with Bezos' spectacular wealth: He is the richest person alive, worth an estimated $165 billion. "The current rate of $7.25 was set almost a decade ago". Target recently vowed to raise its minimum wage to $15 per hour by 2020.

Amazon, which became the second company to cross $1 trillion market value last month, on average paid employees $28,446 previous year.

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Workers have been protesting against fast food chains like McDonald's Corp and demanding wage increases since 2012.

The federal minimum wage for the now $7.25, though most states offer higher wages.

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The company's new United Kingdom minimum wage exceeds a so-called London Living Wage of 10.20 pounds that some British businesses have adopted. "We intend to advocate for a minimum wage increase that will have a profound impact on the lives of tens of millions of people and families across this country".

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