Waltons Get Richer; Walmart Workers, Average Americans Struggle

Forbes came out with their list of wealthiest Americans today, and it’s been another good year for the Waltons. Four Waltons—Christy, Jim, Alice, and Rob—find themselves in the top ten, and two more Waltons round out the top 100. The Waltons are now worth $115 billion, making them far and away the richest family in America.

While, overall, American families have seen a serious drop in both income and wealth during the financial crisis, the Walton family has continued to grow richer and richer. The family’s wealth has increased by more than 50% since 2006. In fact, According to analysis released in July by economists at the Economic Policy Institute and UC Berkeley, in 2010, the six members of the Walton family on the Forbes list had the same wealth as the bottom 42% of American families combined (nearly 50 million American families).

The contrast between average Americans and the Waltons is starkest at the very company almost all the Waltons’ wealth comes from, Walmart. The average Walmart worker makes $8.81 an hour. At that rate, it would take a Walmart Associate working Wamart’s definition of full-time more than 7 million years to earn as much wealth as the Walton family has.


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