Wage inflation on the agenda after Amazon gives workers a big raise

More than 350,000 U.S. workers will see the minimum wage increase to $15 (£11.57) an hour, while nearly 40,000 United Kingdom workers will see their pay rise to £10.50 in London and £9.50 across the rest of the country.

That could be good news for numerous Internet giant's workers across North Carolina.

The pay hike, one of the largest awarded by any major USA company, will affect 250,000 Amazon employees and 100,000 seasonal employees who are hired at Amazon sites during the holiday season.

Amazon has recently been targeted over its pay by Senator Bernie Sanders, who last month introduced a less-than-subtly-named piece of legislation called the Stop Bad Employers by Zering Out Subsidies-"Stop BEZOS"-Act". Its starting pay is $10 an hour at a warehouse in Austin, Texas, and $13.50 an hour in Robbinsville, New Jersey. Last month it became the second publicly traded company to be worth $1 trillion, hot on the heels of Apple. "The current rate of $7.25 was set almost a decade ago", Senior Vice President of Amazon Global Corporate Affairs Jay Carney said in a statement.

Shark attack injures boy, 13, at Southern California beach
On Sept. 15, a man died at a Cape Cod hospital after police say he was attacked by a shark off a Wellfleet, Massachusetts, beach . Several people were in the water diving for lobsters, he said, because it was opening season for catching the crustaceans.

Average hourly pay jumped 0.4 percent in August and increased 2.9 percent compared with a year earlier.

Competition among companies for qualified workers is growing more intense, and they are increasingly willing to pay. Retail rival Target announced in its holiday hiring release it would raise minimum hourly wage to $15 by 2020.

Workers have been protesting against fast food chains like McDonald's Corp and demanding wage increases since 2012 but conditions at Amazon's warehouses, distribution centers and for its couriers have been drawing media attention and criticism for some time.

Beyond the US, Amazon announced it will pay 10.50 pounds an hour in London and 9.50 pounds in other parts of the UK. The increases will include 17,000 Amazon employees as well as 20,000 seasonal workers. The proposed law says companies that don't pay a living wage should have to reimburse the tax authorities for the federal benefits paid out to their low-wage workers.

Latest News