WalMart To Fire 16,000 As It Closes 269 Stores Globally

Tyler Durden's picture

The last 12 months have not been kind to WalMart. 

When the world's largest retailer bowed to pressure to raise wages for its lowest-paid employees, the living wage crowd cheered. In short order, it became apparent that the reverberations from the $1.5 billion endeavor would spell trouble for the company.

When a series of ill-fated efforts to squeeze the supply chain failed to plug the gap, the company resorted to store closures (or "plumbing" as WalMart calls it), job cuts in Bentonville, and reduced hours. 

Finally, in October, WalMart threw in the towel and cut guidance. Its shares plunged. 

Now, we learn the retailer is set to close nearly 300 stores, affecting some 16,000 employees worldwide.


This time around, "plumbing" was not cited as a factor.

Behold: the effect of an across the board minimum wage hike...

*  *  *

Full PR

Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (WMT: NYSE) today announced plans to close 269 stores in the U.S. and globally.

In October 2015, the company said an active review of the portfolio was underway to ensure assets were aligned with strategy. Today’s action follows a thorough review of Walmart’s nearly 11,600 worldwide stores that took into account a number of factors, including financial performance as well as strategic alignment with long-term plans. In total, the impacted stores represent less than 1 percent of both global square footage and revenue.

“Actively managing our portfolio of assets is essential to maintaining a healthy business,” said Doug McMillon, president and CEO, Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. “Closing stores is never an easy decision, but it is necessary to keep the company strong and positioned for the future. It’s important to remember that we’ll open well more than 300 stores around the world next year. So we are committed to growing, but we are being disciplined about it.”

Store Closings/Openings

As part of today’s action, the company will close 154 locations in the U.S., including the company’s 102 smallest format stores, Walmart Express, which had been in pilot since 2011. Walmart instead will focus on strengthening Supercenters, optimizing Neighborhood Markets, growing the e-commerce business and expanding Pickup services for customers. Also covered in the closures are 23 Neighborhood Markets, 12 Supercenters, seven stores in Puerto Rico, six discount centers, and four Sam’s Clubs.

Internationally, the company  is following a disciplined strategy of actively managing its portfolio. Consistent with this strategy, the company is closing 115 stores outside the United States. This includes 60 recently-closed, loss-making stores in Brazil, which represents only 5 percent of sales in that market. The company has already been able to relocate many affected associates in Brazil to other stores. The remaining 55 stores are primarily small, loss-making stores in other Latin American markets.  Walmart will disclose more detail about those actions, including the number of stores per market, after completing local associate and community outreach. 

Walmart will continue to invest in its future, with plans to open stores worldwide in the coming fiscal year. Domestically, Walmart intends to open 50 to 60 Supercenters and 85 to 95 Neighborhood Markets in Fiscal 2017, which begins Feb. 1. In the same period, Sam’s Club plans to open in seven to 10 new locations. Internationally, Walmart intends to open between 200 and 240 stores during the coming year.

Financial Impact

The financial impact of these closures is estimated to be approximately $0.20 to $0.22 of diluted earnings per share from continuing operations, with approximately $0.19 to $0.20 expected to impact the fourth quarter of fiscal 2016. The remainder of the impact will fall into the first half of fiscal 2017. Approximately 75 percent of the impact relates to U.S. closings and the remaining portion involves Walmart International, with a large majority of the international impact relating to the closures in Brazil. Walmart will report its fiscal 2016 fourth-quarter and full-year results on Feb. 18. The estimated financial impact is not included in the company’s fiscal 2016 fourth quarter and full year earnings guidance.   

Store Associates and Transition Assistance

In total, approximately 16,000 associates will be impacted by the decision, about 10,000 of them in the U.S. More than 95 percent of the closed stores in the U.S. are within 10 miles on average of another Walmart, and the hope is that these associates will be placed in nearby locations. Where that isn’t possible, the company will provide 60 days of pay and, if eligible, severance, as well as resume and interview skills training. Whether with Walmart or elsewhere, the company’s objective is to help all associates find their next job opportunity.

“The decision to close stores is difficult and we care about the associates who will be impacted,” McMillon said. “We invested considerable time assessing our stores and clubs and don’t take this lightly. We are supporting those impacted with extra pay and support, and we will take all appropriate steps to ensure they are treated well.” 

Walmart will continue to serve the shopping needs of U.S. customers in the markets affected by today’s announcement through other Walmart locations and online at Customers can find the nearest Walmart store through the store locator function on the company’s website. A list of U.S. stores that are closing will be available today on the company’s website at approximately 11 a.m. CST.

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Truther's picture

Fuck the Waltons....

Durrmockracy's picture
Durrmockracy (not verified) Truther Jan 15, 2016 9:15 AM

Yes, they take life insurance out on their own workers and call them "dead peasants".

Looney's picture

There must be a correlation – first, they close 269 restrooms for “plumbing issues” and then, they close 269 stores. Hmmm…  ;-)


Cangaroo.TNT's picture

Who want's to make a gentleman's bet?  I say declaration of war before QE.

Save_America1st's picture

But obammy just told everyone the other night that everything was doing great.  He must not read ZeroHedge.

I guess it's just us pesky gun owners messing everything up. 

I still buy ammo at WalMart (but we call it Ghetto-Mart). ;-)

The Juggernaut's picture

This minimum wage hike discussion is simply jargon.  The minimum wage is enabling the Fed Reserve to continue to make the currency worthless.  The minimum wage hike is to prevent riots in the street and to hide the truth that someone (a small handful of people) controls everything!

MilwaukeeMark's picture

The MW hike is just another redistribution scam (from makers to takers) masquading, in typical liberal fashion, as genuine compassion.
It's a no lose. Where it sticks it increases the FICA tax/match scheme. Where it fails it provides more entitlement voters who are thrown onto the rolls of food stamps and extended unemployment. For large business who can automate it's a win because it guts smaller businesses who can't spread the costs over a larger revenue base.?
Win win for politicians, poverty bureaucrats and big corporations
Lose lose for the sheep who lose jobs or pay more for their daily needs.

hal10000's picture

Capitalism is the redistribution system par excellence as it funnels wealth upwards no matter what.

So what if they jack the minimum wage?  They'll just recoup the lost cost with higher prices for rent and consumer products.  Even when the government tax and spends, it's glorified corporate welfare because they tax the little guy and run huge deficits, which means they're transfering wealth the to rich.  Taxes are just part of their scam to suck the lifeblood out of the serfs so the pampered nomenklatura of our corporate state can remain in lavish luxury.  They give their employees more money, and eventually the employees end up funnelling it back into the system through entities like Walmart, GM and the banks.  Or sometimes they just cut out the middle buy and give it straight to Blackwater and Raytheon...

The fact is, Walmart may scream and whine about hiking the minimum wage but as the Bard famously wrote: "thou doth protest too much."  The Waltons and people like them know full well, they'll be getting it right back anyways because the economic system is stacked in the favour.  And that's why they pay so much for propaganda to brainwash the public and pay lavishly for control of the legislatures and judiciaries.

The problem is the wealth is funnelling upwards to the top, never to be seen again...  the little guy can't win.   Our system ensures that he/she CAN'T win.

FreeMoney's picture

You are confusing capitalism with our system.  They are not even close to the same thing.

LibertarianMenace's picture

He's just confused. Look at Bernie's latest poll numbers: it's contagious.

847328_3527's picture

The Obama recovery is spreading looks like.

Yes We Can. But Lets Not.'s picture

I knew it!

Kmart has been kicking Walmart's ass.

pelican's picture

Wow... maybe we will see the return of the Mom and Pop stores.

Villageidiot777's picture

Or maybe people have learned to buy chinese shit straight from China(AliBaba) and cut out the middle man. Let the beast starve.

hal10000's picture

lol  Go back to Drudge and leave the thinking to those actually capable of it.

People can't even see reality when presented to them.  For that, I blame people like the Kochs who spend endless amount of money hiring stooges to brainwash people think that somehow raising the minimum wage is somehow going to hurt things.  Endlessly they rot out some university economist or technical analysts with an alphabet soup behind their names to say things rich people would never be able to get away with if they said it themselves.  So they hire a third party to do it for them.  That's the basis of the entire PR and lobbying industry.  Then the faithful will then rush out to their computer screens and endlessly bicker with those people who magically think increasing the minimum wage is actually going to solve *anything*.  As I mentioned earlier, the results will be short-lived.

The highly paid priesthoods academia and think tanks know full well the reactions that will occur; this is why they are paid big bucks by those who have bigger bucks.  They convince the faithful the earth will open up and swallow us all whole because we pay the dregs and serfs a tiny bit little more.  They know if Walmart closes a bunch of stores (they shouldn't have openned in the first place), management and their highly paid PR tweet monkies can then ascribe their own management failure upon "the raising of the minimum wage" of the takers.  Even their worst case scenario of the wage going up, they know full well they'll be getting it all back anyways; even the truly indoctrinated faithful can be counted on to bring this up proving that even a broken clock is right twice a day.  Walmart knows full well that even if the minimum wage goes up, they're insulated.  They know the costs will be passed onto others, especially those below them.

Hike the minimum wage to $50.00 and watch as slumlords across the nations magically jack rents up into the stratosphere when they realize their captive market of rent-seekers now has more money all of a sudden.  What do you think the medical insurance industry is going to feel once they know people are trapped into buying medical insurance and they see a large market of minimum wage people getting a pay increase?  That's right, they'll be charging more.  And so on.  That feeling that your side won by getting everyone a pay increase will make you feel good.  For all of 30 seconds.

LibertarianMenace's picture

Nothing wrong with minimum wage as long it's zero. Capiche? Now who's Drudge?

Stuck on Zero's picture

Hal. Why do people need a minimum wage hike? Because of inflation. Who creates inflation? Corrupt government.

slimycorporatedickhead's picture

ya since when is this capitalism? reconsider yourself before you wreck yourself

mkkby's picture

Article is bullshit.  Try reading the details -- wmt to close 269 and open 240 new stores.  Ho hum.

Antifaschistische's picture

what a BS definition of Capitalism.   Capitalism is the relationship between an individuals production and their income (or loss).    Invent a diesel engine (thank you Mr. Diesel) and you get wealthy because the world needs diesel engines.   Invent and air conditioner (thank you Mr. Carrier) you get rich because the world needs air conditioning.

Don't confuse "capitalism" with fascism and buying off politicians.  And don't confuse capitalism with central bank counterfeiting debt schemes designed to enrich wall streeters and big money corporations who are all getting money for free.  That isn't capitalism... 

bigkahuna's picture

Hal has either fallen for contemporary redefinitions of real terms ala liberalism and liberals now is all about statism and government control whereas the terms themselves are actually rooted in freedom and in this particular case limited government.

I have seen in particular the lefties taking words like capitalism and invoking things like the tragedy of the commons and the contemporary corporate fascism and using them as strawmen to say how great it is to have increased if not totalitarian style government control over markets and raw economics.

These folks, right or left, are either spiteful losers who want to tear everyone else down to their level or completely delusional. As I have stated before, they will take their ideaologies straight to the guillotine when the monster (worshipful government) they are feeding no longer has use for them. It has happened over and over in history, too bad as an aggregate, we never learn the dangers of overbearing government.

Billy the Poet's picture

Capitalism is the redistribution system par excellence as it funnels wealth upwards no matter what.

Andrew Carnegie was  the son of an unemployed Scottish weaver. He became a millionaire many times over. You see this as funneling wealth upwards. Thomas Edison went from a twelve year old who worked on the railroad to a millionaire many times over. You see this as funneling wealth upward.

Is it possible that you're standing on your head and don't realize it?


Our system ensures that he/she CAN'T win.

Capital is savings. Our system is based on debt. You do realize that wealth and debt are two entirely different things, don't you?

general ambivalent's picture

You all either have very superficial understandings of your ideology or you choose to be manipulative with romanticised, tired cliches of why your ideology is good. The reality is that capitalism is a governmental form of wealth creation. It developed in France as the government/monarchy became too large and landowners particpated in the bureaucracy of wealth ccreation for the monarchy while trying to obscure the purpose of monetary and political exchange.

The nihilistic and purposeless base idea behind capitalism is much the same as science. Like the idea that observation of real world exchanges between objects leads to fact-based truths and that science always has a positive outcome (even after failures) due to the expansion of knowledge, the idea that exchange in the real world and valorisation of objects as social contracts between individuals always ends with the positive outcome of production. In short, both capitalism and scientism rely on romanticised truths with hidden contradictions - both opening up a world reliant upon moral relativism for the benefit of runaway government.

And much like science - of which believers refuse to acknowledge that the golden age of science developed through the tinkering with religious war weapons - capitalism developed through the use of the monarchist empire's expansion and conquest of resources. Capital itself is an idea which, in its theorisation by believers, denies the very source of the goods and economises a political safe-space where a positive progression of politics/production can run away without adversaries.

It is a reductionist ideology, much like the current belief that plundering of foreign oil will not eventually have consequences. It may not be capitalism to you, but you seem to have Janet Yellen goggles on, printing ideology to infinity. Or in other words, the current madness is the perfect outcome of a mad system. Capitalism is the progression of satanic mills in process, and the current absurdity of the world is largely dominated by the derivative accumulation of the contradictions inherent to capitalist ideology.

StychoKiller's picture

And here I thought that taxes were for ensuring that Granny could afford Fancy Feast™!

Hal n back's picture

if min wage goes up, then in fashion the rest of the pay grades go up, and this is a way of bringng inflation into the system. Sounds good early on but when the circle is closed, it wil stink up the place.


gimme soma dat's picture

I call it "Burka-mart" or "Wal-martistan"

OregonGrown's picture

Anyone saying America's economy is in decline "is peddling fiction".

TeamDepends's picture

Welcome to Walmart, we're closed and I love you.

TheDanimal's picture

I know what it is, it's the shitty processed foods combined with the unhealthy customers.  Those poor toilets.

TheDanimal's picture

I know what it is, it's the shitty processed foods combined with the unhealthy customers.  Those poor toilets.

FireBrander's picture

It's ALL because of the minimum wage! That's costing a ton of money; the Walton kids have LOST BILLIONS...the oldest Walton duaghter is DOWN TO HER LAST $25 BILLION in assets...STUPID FUCKING LIBERALS.

FireBrander's picture

Then again, the minimum wage may play no part AT ALL...the starting wage for WM around here is higher than the min wage...because THE MARKET demanded one was applying!

...ANY chance...DIRTY stores, HORRIBLE all around service, SLOW Checkouts, MINIMAL employee appearance standards, lack of brand selection and TERRIBLE produce play any part?

WalMarts' problem is two fold.



1 + 2 = shortage of customers = STORE CLOSINGS!

FireBrander's picture

2 employees making $7.25/hr = 2 people getting their healthcare via Medicaid while the Waltons/Management adds to thier billions.

1 un-employed person and 1 employee making $10.10/hr = 2 people getting their healthcare via Medicaid while the Waltons/Management adds to thier billions.

Wake up morons...those BILLIONS in PROFITS were STOLEN from YOU via the WELFARE SYSTEM!

You pay for Walmarts employee's health care....YOU pay for the Section 8 Housing, SNAP....EVERYTHING that $7.25/$10.10/hr job won't cover...

Can't you see how FUCKED UP that is? Billions in PROFITS for the FEW that are "earned" via the TAXPAYERS subsidising WalMart's employee costs!


The USA's Welfare system is a "Wealth Redistribution System" that takes FROM YOU and funnels YOUR MONEY to Crony Corporate America via the "poor"; and you blame "poor people" for all the welfare spending...fools...the majority of people on welfare WOULD RATHER WORK like their parents...making washing machines and tires...but those jobs were taken away...

Iconoc's picture

In a Sam's Club in Plano, TX, there is a quote on the wall from one of the Waltons.  The quote speaks to how great they are about giving back to the community, etc.  The essence of the quote is "its not what you gather, but what you scatter" in six inch letters.  This mates nicely with your peasant comment.

Winston Churchill's picture

Like how rhino's mark their territory sort of scatter ?

Iconoc's picture

In a Sam's Club in Plano, TX, there is a quote on the wall from one of the Waltons.  The quote speaks to how great they are about giving back to the community, etc.  The essence of the quote is "its not what you gather, but what you scatter" in six inch letters.  This mates nicely with your peasant comment.

orez65's picture

I know several people who work at Walmart and they are happy with their jobs.
I do some shopping at Walmart and get good value at low prices.
If you don't like Walmart or how they treat their employees stay the fu.k out of their stores.
But don't blame the generic effects of an increase in the minimum wage on them because it is stupid.

LowerSlowerDelaware_LSD's picture
LowerSlowerDelaware_LSD (not verified) orez65 Jan 15, 2016 11:48 AM

WTF?!?!?  You're on ZH.  You must HATE companies that earn money by providing what consumers demand (cheap shit, in general) or be down voted into oblivion.  You didn't know that?

MilwaukeeMark's picture

Your comment is spot on!
Your (6 so far) down voters are hypocrites who cry when government interferes with business but then decry Walmarts success at bringing people what they want, low prices.
Last time I watched, no one was being marched into a Walmart at gun point to work or to shop.
So go ahead now, down vote me too for stating the obvious.

FireBrander's picture

"decry Walmarts success"


"WalMarts success" is partially derived from FORCING TAXPAYERS TO PICK UP EMPLOYEE COSTS!

That is what I "decry".


Undercover Boss TV show in the USA featured Kendall-Jackson Wine Estates.

Long story short, the owners are BILLIONAIRES while the TAXPAYERS of CALIFORNIA spend a fortune on the SOCIAL COSTS of Kendall-Jackson's "no benefit, low paying' jobs; many of which go to ILLEGAL immigrants!


Black Warrior Waterdog's picture

Then blame the fucking government who writes the rules, not the company that has to play the game.

FireBrander's picture

Ever heard of lobbying moron?... Corporations write the rules for themselves.

StychoKiller's picture

Pretty sure that Maxine Waters will fix all this, just as soon as she gets re-elected (again, and again!)

Dragon HAwk's picture

One thing i will say for WallMart, in our town they hire people nobody else would hire, and give them a shot,  we have a guy named  Wayne, crippled  right arm, been there for years, lots of others,  not everybody is a millionaire, those kind of people are happy for whatever they can hold onto. I told Wayne, if they ever fire him just stand outside and tell  everybody that comes in. I think the whole town would picket the place

Lumberjack's picture

@Durrmockracy, Enron started that one. That said, must be either the WX or the plumbing...  

Ghost of PartysOver's picture

Political Correctness is ticket to ruination.   I have refused to go to Walmart after the politically correct move to raise the minimum wage.  That was the final straw, the first being to support of ObamaCare.

Durrmockracy's picture
Durrmockracy (not verified) Ghost of PartysOver Jan 15, 2016 9:18 AM

...and their banning of the rebel flag.  I refuse to do business with Walmart, Amazon, eBay or any other business pushing political correctness.

chunga's picture
BREAKING: Harney County Fire Chief Resigns. FBI Caught Posing As Militia At Local Armory