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How much the typical worker makes at 19 retailers, from Amazon to Walmart

How much the typical worker makes at 19 retailers, from Amazon to Walmart
Retail1 min read
Costco pays better than any other major retailer.Justin Sullivan/Getty Images
  • Wages for retail workers have been going up in recent years.
  • SEC rules require publicly traded companies to disclose their workers' median annual pay.

Retail workers' hourly wages have increased substantially in the last several years as major employers like Walmart, Target, Home Depot, Lowe's, and more have plowed billions of dollars into pay increases in a bid to get people to join — and stay.

Ever since Amazon set its minimum wage at $15 in 2018, more retailers have followed suit by offering starting wages that are more than double the national minimum of $7.25. The Federal minimum was last set in 2009.

But hourly wages are just one part of the pay equation. An employee's earnings also depend greatly on how many hours they work. That can vary considerably, especially in seasonal segments.

So, to get a picture of what the typical worker makes in a year at various retail brands, Business Insider used AlphaSense to find the data in the most recent proxy filings that publicly traded companies must file with the US Securities Exchange Commission.

Rules following the financial crisis of 2008 require public companies to calculate their median worker's annual salary to compare it to the CEO's compensation.

"Median" refers to the middle-most value in an ordered list. In terms of compensation, that means about half of a company's workers earn more and half earn less than its "median employee."

Scroll through below to see where 19 of the largest companies rank, from lowest to highest annual pay.

19. Gap: $7,573

19. Gap: $7,573
Jennifer Ortakales Dawkins/Business Insider

The 2023 calculation is up from $7,348 in 2021, and the company says its typical median employee would be a part-time sales associate in Canada who did not work the full year.

18. TJX: $13,884*

18. TJX: $13,884*
Gabbi Shaw/Business Insider

TJX Companies — which include TJ Maxx, Marshalls, and others — increased its median pay in 2022 from 2018's level of $11,243.

*2022 figure as 2023 Proxy Statement not yet filed.

17. Starbucks: $14,209

17. Starbucks: $14,209
Starbucks customers can use their own cups for mobile orders      Starbucks

Starbucks says its median figure is calculated from its global workforce of baristas, which causes it to be lower than it might be for only its US employees. Still, the company considers its median employee a part-time barista in the United States.

16. Ulta: $14,998*

16. Ulta: $14,998*
Ann Matica/Insider

Ulta identifies its median employee by ranking all 52,929 associates from high to low by total cash compensation and selecting the middlemost one. Its 2018 median was $27,235, but was calculated at that time including the value of employer-paid healthcare benefits.

*2022 figure as 2023 Proxy Statement not yet filed.

15. McDonald's: $15,802

15. McDonald
Reuters

The burger giant's median is more than double the 2018 level of $7,017, and it says the 2023 median worker is a restaurant crew employee located in Poland.

13. Chipotle: $16,595

13. Chipotle: $16,595
Chipotle worker at assembly line      Gregory Rec/Portland Press Herald via Getty Images

Chipotle's median worker is an hourly part-time employee who works roughly 24 hours per week at one of its restaurants in Florida.

13. Foot Locker: $20,168

13. Foot Locker: $20,168
Bethany Biron/Business Insider

The shoe retailer's pay is up from 2018's median of $8,554, and the company says its median worker in 2023 averaged 27 hours per week in a store in Madrid, Spain.

12. Advance Auto Parts: $23,923

12. Advance Auto Parts: $23,923
Mark Stehle/AP

Advance Auto Parts includes all team members in their analysis of the median employee, including part-time, full-time, and seasonal team members. The 2023 level is up from $18,460 in 2018.

11. Target: $25,993*

11. Target: $25,993*
A Target store employee      Joe Raedle / Getty Images

Target annualizes the pay of all full- and part-time employees, but takes only the actual earnings of seasonal and temporary workers to find the median for the whole workforce. The company says its median team member is employed part-time.

*2022 figure as 2023 Proxy Statement not yet filed.

10. Walmart: $27,136*

10. Walmart: $27,136*
Walmart store managers will see a pay increase starting in February.      Houston Chronicle/Hearst Newspapers via Getty Images

Walmart is the largest private employer in the world with 2.1 million workers around the world, of which 1.6 million are based in the US. The company uses statistical sampling to identify a group of associates paid within a range of .5% of the company's median earnings amount, and then chooses the median compensated associate from that group. Its 2022 median was up more than 40% from $19,177 in 2018.

*2022 figure as 2023 Proxy Statement not yet filed.

9. Kroger: $28,644

9. Kroger: $28,644
Rogelio V. Solis/AP Images

Kroger owns 19 grocery brands; its median employee is a part-time associate in the US Southeast.

8. Albertson's: $31,781*

8. Albertson
Geri Lavrov/Getty Images

Albertson's owns 15 grocery store companies and says its median worker is a full-time hourly employee.

*2022 figure as 2023 Proxy Statement not yet filed.

7. Best Buy: $32,197*

7. Best Buy: $32,197*
A sales associate processes the purchase of a hard drive at a Best Buy store after doors opened at 5 a.m. on Black Friday, Nov. 26, 2021, in Lone Tree, Colo.      David Zalubowski/AP

Best Buy employs roughly 95,000 workers, mostly in the US and Canada. The median employee was identified by annualizing the earnings of all part- and full-time workers except for the CEO.

*2022 figure as 2023 Proxy Statement not yet filed.

6. Lowe's: $32,626

6. Lowe
Joe Raedle / Getty Images

Lowe's includes full-time and part-time employees to determine the median employee and considers actual base salary, bonus or commission paid, and any overtime. Its 2023 rate is up roughly 36% from the 2018 level of $23,905.

5. Macy's: $34,438

5. Macy
Macy's.      Noam Galai/Getty Images

More than half of Macy's workforce consists of part-time or seasonal employees, and the company estimates its median based on all employees other than the CEO. The 2023 median is more than double 2018's median of $13,810.

4. Home Depot: $35,131

4. Home Depot: $35,131
Jose Ulloa Jr. works in a Home Depot store on May 17, 2016 in Miami, Florida      Joe Raedle/Getty

Home Depot bases its data on its total workforce and says the median-paid associate was an hourly employee in the US. The 2023 median is up 66% from $21,095 in 2018.

3. Nordstrom: $35,636

3. Nordstrom: $35,636
Nordstrom released a collection of clothing and accessories from Something Navy in 2017.      Brandon Bell/Getty Images

Nordstrom includes full-time, part-time seasonal, and temporary employees to identify the median employee and says roughly half of its workforce is part-time or seasonal. The 2023 median is up 18% from $30,105 in 2018.

2. Amazon: $36,274

2. Amazon: $36,274
Sandy Huffaker/Reuters

When calculating its median compensation, Amazon considers all full-time, part-time, and temporary employees worldwide, excluding CEO Andy Jassy. When considering only US full-time employees, the median annual compensation was $45,613.

1. Costco: $50,202

1. Costco: $50,202
Joe Raedle/Getty Images

Costco employs roughly 300,00 workers worldwide, of which about 198,000 are based in the US. The company's calculations include full-time, part-time, seasonal, and temporary employees, and use a combination of salary, bonus, equity compensation, and other measurable benefits paid during the year.

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