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report print email Source: Editorial: Costco plans for Forsyth location cause fervor, Walmart  not so much
Comparing WMT to Costco is pointless
January 21, 2014 | 12:46 PM

Costco has about 4,000 SKUS. Walmart has well over 100,000. Walmart is a far more labor-intensive operation, which means that more low-wage jobs are needed.

Costco, Trader Joes, etc serve a population with average incomes well over $80k/household. They aren't serving the same population. A LOT of people depend on Walmart to be able to afford things they need. They aren't going to pay $55/year dues, which authors tend to overlook when gushing about Costco.

Hey, I shop at Costco, but let's not kid ourselves. Walmart's scale is massive and employs over a million people. Any one of them has the chance to improve their situation, but it's up to the employee.

Do you really think Costco and Walmart "floor level" employees are hired from the same talent pool? Costco employees are typically college-educated. So what if you compared Costco wages to Microsoft, or Proctor & Gamble? How do they fare?

Starting wages aren't that far apart. At Walmart, you'd make almost $9/hr, at Costco you'd make $11/hr. Costco's numbers are inflated due to lower headcount and averaging in all employees, including managers making in excess of six figures. Fuzzy math.

Social media. Yeah...I am sure a lot of families that take the bus to Walmart to save money on bread have time to post on Facebook about store openings. What would you expect?

Bottom line, you can't compare the two.

A. Reader
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