If Walmart was to suddenly close,
the results would be quite detrimental to the retail industry. There would be
an increased rate in unemployment because Walmart hires a fluctuating 1% of the
working US population. The unemployment rate would go up by 1% overnight, and
that would be just the start. The ripple effect on unemployment would be
dramatic as well. Thousands of companies that sell to Walmart would likely
either go under or be forced to dramatically cut their workforces. Businesses
around Walmart stores and offices would also be affected. Walmart is often a permanent
tenant, and the business that they would normally drive to a shopping area
would be gone. Property owners would be hurt both by the immediate impact of
lost leases and by the longer-term
price drops that Walmart’s vacancies would drive.
Due to minimum
wage having increased across the United States over the years, this impact prompted
Walmart stores to adjust base salaries at 1,434 stores, affecting about a third
of its U.S. locations. These are adjustments that Walmart and other employers
have to make each year, but growing attention to the issue has expanded the
scope of the change. Thirteen U.S. states lifted the minimum wage in 2014, up
from 10 in 2013 and 8 in 2012.
being world’s largest retailer in the U.S. in recent years has tried to repair
a reputation that’s been damaged by decades of criticism and legal troubles.
Community activists have blamed it for damaging the neighborhoods where it
builds its stores. Labor groups have lambasted it for not treating its workers
well. And politicians have called it a poor steward of the environment.
has been doing things like offering employees better health-care coverage and
working with its suppliers to reduce environmental waste. But, there have
allegations that Walmart paid millions of dollars in bribes to officials in
Mexico threaten to derail its efforts. The accusations highlight how difficult
it is for a company as big and powerful as Walmart to dig itself out of a pile
of bad publicity. As history shows, the discounter’s low-income customers
continue to shop at the retailer even when it’s having image problems. But the
fallout from the latest accusations could become a distraction for the company
at a time when it’s battling growing competition.
There have been labor unions that
formed to oppose the company. These groups have argued that Walmart, the
largest U.S. private employer with 1.4 million workers, doesn’t pay fair wages
or provide adequate health care. They have said the company’s big-box stores
are eyesores that crush small businesses and wreak havoc on traffic and
commerce in local communities. They have complained that Walmart hasn’t taken
responsibility for its impact on the environment. And they have complained that
the company buys too many goods overseas. All of these are hazards that Walmart
has been going up against, that would bring about potential losses.
An example of an incident that could
cause harm, and would result in significant claim, would be if I was using one
of the motorized Walmart carts, and then there was a malfunction with the
battery, causing it to explode while I operated the cart. I would file claim,
for the damage this cost me, which is the loss of my foot. This sort of loss
will result in a claim, because it would cause customers to be wary of the
products provided by Walmart, which would result in financial losses for them.