Walmart Fires Corporate Workers Following a Cut in Q2’s Outlook

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Walmart is cutting jobs.

This news comes a week after a big-box retailer lowered its outlook for Q2 due to consumer spending slowing down in discretionary categories such as apparel.

According to The Wall Street Journal, the retailer will eliminate hundreds of corporate positions.
Walmart spokesperson Jimmy Carter stated, “evolving selected roles in providing clarity, better position the company for the future.”

However, the spokesperson could not confirm how many jobs were eliminated or which sectors were affected. He did, however, mention that Walmart is “further investing in” e-commerce technology, health, wellness, and supply chain departments and creating new jobs.

In the past year, Walmart has set hiring goals for store employees and supply chain associates. Walmart announced in April that it would increase the pay of its close to 12,000 truck driver drivers and create a program to train new drivers. Walmart stated that truck drivers could now earn up to $110,000 in their first year and the possibility to make more as they age.

The retailer stated in March that it would hire more than 50,000 workers in the United States to staff its stores, offices, and supply chain facilities. Walmart also said it is looking to hire 150,000 U.S. store associates and 20,000 supply chain roles across more than 250 Walmart and Sam’s Club distribution centers, fulfillment centers, and transportation offices.

Last week, Walmart expected Q2 adjusted earnings per share to fall between 8% and 9% for the second quarter and 11% and 13% for the entire year. Walmart U.S. expects comp sales to be around 6% in the second quarter, excluding fuel. This is because more people buy food.

Walmart claims that the rise in food prices has impacted customers’ ability to spend on other categories. This led to more markdowns to clear out excess inventory, particularly apparel. June saw a 9.1% increase in consumer prices compared to one year ago. This is the most significant 12-month-long increase since November 1981. The rise in food prices was 10.4%.

“The rising levels of fuel and food inflation are affecting how customers shop, and while we have made good progress clearing hardline category, apparel in Walmart U.S. requires more markdown dollars,” stated Doug McMillon, Walmart CEO and President. “We expect more pressure on the back half of general merchandise, but we are encouraged by the positive start on school supplies in Walmart U.S.”

Walmart will report its second-quarter results on August 16.

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