Which Ten U.S. Companies Pay Their Workers The Least?

According to the financial section of Yahoo, as shared at Everlasting GOP Stoppersthese ten companies pay their employees the least. Take note of each employer’s executive compensation and net income (e.g. profits) relative to the average pay of their workers. 

10. Starbucks > U.S. workforce: 120,000 > CEO compensation: $28.9 million > Revenue: $13.3 billion > Net income: $1.4 billion > No. of U.S. stores: 5,415/7,049/13,493

Starbucks Corp. (SBUX) employs 120,000 workers across the United States. Howard Schultz, the company’s CEO, has become a billionaire by turning Starbucks from a small coffee retailer into one of the world’s most famous brands. Last year, Schultz took home nearly $29 million in total compensation. Schultz is often viewed as a progressive executive, due to his support of gay marriage and his request that customers not bring guns into Starbucks locations. In an interview with CNBC in March, Schultz cautiously supported a minimum wage hike. However, according to Glassdoor.com, baristas at Starbucks are paid an average of less than $9 an hour. Schultz has downplayed the relevance of these figures.

9. TJX Companies > U.S. workforce: 138,211 (est.) > CEO compensation:$21.8 million > Revenue: $25.9 billion > Net income: $1.9 billion > No. of U.S. stores: 2,355

The TJX Companies Inc. (TJX) operates Marshalls, TJ Maxx and HomeGoods in the United States. The company’s stores are off-price retailers, meaning they buy unsold inventory from manufacturers and other retailers and resell it at a discount. TJX’s sales have grown in the past four consecutive fiscal years as the retailer also boosted its operating profit margin. Despite the company’s success, sales associates at its stores earn less than $8 an hour on average, according to Glassdoor.com.

8. Macy’s  > U.S. workforce: 175,700 > CEO compensation: $13.8 million > Revenue: $27.7 billion > Net income: $1.3 billion > No. of U.S. stores: 844

Annual revenue at Macy’s Inc. (NYSE: M) has risen slightly over the past four years, up from roughly $25 billion in 2008 to more than $27.7 billion at the end of its latest fiscal year. Macy’s, the second-largest department store in the United States, exceeded Wall Street’s expectations this past quarter, posting large increases in sales and earnings from the year before. Earlier this year, members of the United Food and Commercial Workers Union ratified a five-year agreement with Macy’s that should help protect the benefits of nearly 700 Macy’s employees in Maryland and Washington, D.C. According to Glassdoor.com, associates are paid under $9 an hour on average.

7. Darden Restaurants > U.S. workforce: 203,389 (est.) > CEO compensation: $6.4 million > Revenue: $8.6 billion > Net income: $412 million > No. of U.S. stores: 2,105

Revenues at Darden Restaurants Inc. (DRI), the parent company of chains such as Olive Garden and Red Lobster, rose from just $7.2 billion in 2009 to $8.6 billion in fiscal 2013. According to Morningstar’s analysis, operating margins have been some of the best in the industry in the past few years. Additionally, instead of raising wages, the company’s funds have been used effectively “to fund growth concepts and enhance total shareholder returns.” Yet the results have not been enough for investors, some of whom have pushed for the company to split and continue to cut costs faster. In 2013, Fortune named Darden one of the “100 Best Companies to Work For,” citing access to low-cost health insurance for part-time employees. Still, pay for many workers at Olive Garden and Red Lobster is frequently less than $10.00 per hour, according to Glassdoor.com. However, many of these employees may receive tips in addition to their base pay.

6. Sears Holdings > U.S. workforce: 246,000 > CEO compensation: $1.3 million (Louis D’Ambrosio, former CEO) > Revenue: $39.9 billion > Net income: -$930 million > No. of U.S. stores: 2,073

Sears Holdings Corp. (SHLD), owner of both Sears and Kmart, is in heavy competition with other department stores. The median hourly wage for department store workers was just $9.83 in 2012. At Sears, sales associates averaged slightly more than $8 an hour, while cashiers averaged $7.70 per hour. Kmart offered similar pay to its workers as well, with 105 cashiers and 75 sales associates reporting to Glassdoor.com that their hourly wages were less than $8.00. However, Sears Holdings may not have the necessary ability to increase its employees’ pay. Sales have slipped in the past few years, plunging from $47.8 billion in fiscal 2008 to less than $40 billion in the most recent year. The company has also failed to post an operating profit in either of the past two full fiscal years.

5. Yum! Brands > U.S. workforce: 694,712 (est.) > CEO compensation:$14.2 million > Revenue: $13.6 billion > Net income: $1.6 billion > No. of U.S. stores: 18,069

Yum! Brands Inc. (YUM) CEO David Novak received more than $14 million worth of total compensation in the past fiscal year. The company’s revenue rose from $11.3 billion to $13.6 billion. Hourly wages for workers at its KFC, Pizza Hut and Taco Bell chains, however, are still often less than $8 an hour. Yum! Brands has continued to expand, opening more than five new restaurants a day outside the United States in 2012. However many American workers have expressed frustration that the company’s success has not led to an increase in their pay. This summer, fast-food workers at Yum! Brands and other fast-food chains staged protests across the country, demanding higher wages.

4. Kroger > U.S. workforce: 343,000 > CEO compensation: $11.1 million > Revenue: $96.8 billion > Net income: $1.5 billion > No. of U.S. stores: 2,418

The Kroger Co. (KR) employs 343,000 workers in 2,418 stores across the country. The company operates stores under several names, including Kroger, City Market, Dillons and others. A majority of Kroger’s employees are covered by collective bargaining agreements between the company and different unions. In the past few months, Kroger has agreed to terms with unions covering thousands of workers in Virginia and Texas. Kroger’s net profit was $1.5 billion at the end of the most recent fiscal year.

3. Target > U.S. workforce: 361,000 > CEO compensation: $20.6 million > Revenue: $73.3 billion > Net income: $3.0 billion > No. of U.S. stores: 1,778

Target Corp. (TGT) had 361,000 employees working at 1,778 stores in the United States at the end of 2012. The average listed salary on Glassdoor.com for a cashier or an employee on the Target sales floor is less than $9 an hour. In response to Target opening on Thursday, in advance of Black Friday, Target workers drafted a petition last year to “save Thanksgiving.” More than 300,000 people signed the petition. This year, Target stores will open on Thanksgiving Day at 8 p.m. That is an hour earlier than last year.

2. McDonald’s > U.S. workforce: 739,055 (est.) > CEO compensation:$13.8 million > Revenue: $27.6 billion > Net income: $5.5 billion > No. of U.S. stores: 14,157

In the restaurant industry, the hourly median wage was just over $9.00 as of 2012. However, many McDonald’s Corp. (MCD) employees are paid far less, with cashiers and crew members often earning only the minimum wage. In October, several McDonald’s employees were arrested for protesting their wages at the Union League Club of Chicago, where McDonald’s President Jeff Stratton was giving a speech. Between 2008 and 2012, sales and profit margins at McDonald’s have increased. Despite the company’s growth, employees are still hurting. All but admitting the low wages, McDonald’s encourages employees to enroll in food stamps and welfare programs.

1. Walmart > U.S. workforce: 1.4 million > CEO compensation: $20.7 million> Revenue: $469 billion > Net income: $17.0 billion > No. of U.S. stores:4,759

There are 1.4 million Wal-Mart Stores Inc. (WMT) associates working at the company’s 4,759 U.S. stores. Walmart recently announced it would launch Black Friday sales at 6 p.m. on Thanksgiving Day. Critics of Walmart see this as adding insult to injury — forcing retail workers who already earn low wages to cut holidays short. Criticisms like these have been part of an onslaught of claims that Walmart underpays its workers. Walmart disagrees, saying that “for tens of thousands of people every year, a job at Walmart opens the door to a better life.” According to the company, a full-time hourly wage is $12.83. Some argue that the company’s number is inflated, however, reflecting the salaries of higher-paid employees. Hourly wages for sales associates are less than $9.00, according to Glassdoor.com. Walmart’s net income rose to $17 billion last year.

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