Walmart raises minimum wage to $14

Walmart employees are getting a raise in an effort to retain store and warehouse workers.

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The company announced on Tuesday that the minimum wage would go from $12 to $14 an hour, CNN reported.

The new pay rates will be seen in paychecks issued in March, NBC News reported.

Walmart workers currently earn about $17 an hour on average, which will go to $17.50 once the new wages are in effect. Some workers will be paid up to $19 an hour, NBC News reported.

About 340,000 employees or about 21% of Walmart’s 1.6 million U.S. workers will get the pay bump.

Walmart’s closest competitors, however, pay their employees more. Amazon and Target have their minimum pay set at $15. Costco has a $17 hourly wage, CNN reported.

The federal minimum wage, which was last raised in 2009, is currently $7.25 an hour, The Wall Street Journal reported. Twenty states, especially in the south, do not have their own minimum wages, CNN reported, so Walmart’s pay is often the benchmark used for a local minimum wage in those areas.

Of the states that do have a minimum wage, Washington has the highest at $15.74, CNN reported.