Walmart slams Amazon on Twitter, says 'How about paying your taxes?'

Amazon's Jeff Bezos throws down the gauntlet to rival retailers to boost wages

Amazon's Jeff Bezos taunts brick-and-mortar rivals with minimum wage challenge: 'Do It!'

In his annual shareholder letter, Amazon chief executive officer Jeff Bezos baited his rivals - who were not named - to match a minimum wage hike to US$15 an hour. "Do it! Better yet, go to $16 and throw the gauntlet back at us", he said.

The online retailer giant raised its minimum wage to $15 per hour for USA employees from November, giving in to critics of poor pay and working conditions at the company.

The online retailer hiked its minimum wage in the U.S last November and shippers competed to hire workers for the holiday shopping season amid unemployment at a almost 20 year low.

"Hey retail competitors out there (you know who you are) how about paying your taxes?"

In a statement emailed to The Associated Press Thursday, Walmart defended its record, noting it has increased starting wages by more than 50% in the last three years and now has an average hourly total compensation of more than $17.50. Kitco Metals Inc. and the author of this article do not accept culpability for losses and/ or damages arising from the use of this publication.

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In an annual letter to shareholders, Bezos said Amazon wants to hire hire employees "who can think like owners". "Third-party sellers are kicking our first-party butt", Bezos wrote, attributing their success to tools built by Amazon, including the Prime subscription program and Fulfillment by Amazon distribution service. As for Amazon's competitors, Wal-Mart Stores Inc. has a minimum wage of $11 per hour and Target Stores Inc. pays $12, soon to be increased to $13. The airport is the largest hub for each of the airlines.

"Since that first-generation Echo, customers have purchased more than 100 million Alexa-enabled devices".

"As a company grows, everything needs to scale, including the size of your failed experiments", Bezos wrote.

Walmart has more than 1.5 million workers in the United States compared with just 350,000 at Amazon, so boosting wages would have more of an impact on the bottom line.

Walmart has enacted a number of wage hikes in the past few years.

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