The Walton family is the richest family in the United States and one of the richest in the world. They are heirs to the Walmart fortune and the company’s largest shareholders, with over fifty percent ownership of stock in the retail giant.
Sam Walton and his brother Bud opened their first Walmart discount store in 1962. Today three family members serve on Walmart’s board of directors; Rob is the chair, and sits on the board with his brother Jim and his son-in-law, Greg Penner.
The six Waltons on Forbes’ list of wealthiest Americans have a net worth of $144.7 billion. This fiscal year three Waltons—Rob, Jim, and Alice (and the various entities that they control)—will receive an estimated $3.1 billion in Walmart dividends from their majority stake in the company.
The Waltons aren’t just the face of the 1%; they’re the face of the 0.000001%. The Waltons have more wealth than 42% of American families combined.
The Walton family is the richest family in the United States, with more wealth than Bill Gates and Warren Buffett combined. The Waltons’ wealth comes from their inherited, controlling stake in Walmart. While Walmart workers live in poverty, the Waltons rake in billions every year from the company.
And the Waltons just keep getting richer.
Since 2007, while millions of Americans were having their homes confiscated and jobs eliminated, the fortune of the six Waltons on the Forbes 400 list has more than doubled to an astounding$148.8 billion.
The Waltons have these riches thanks to the hard work of their own employees and all of us taxpayers. Based on recent estimates, taxpayers subsidize Walmart as much as $3 billion per year. Instead of paying workers enough to survive, the Waltons take billions from Walmart every year, while driving their workers on to food stamps and other public assistance.
Unlike their employees, the Waltons reap billions from Walmart every year.
Three Waltons—Rob, Jim, and Alice (all children of Walmart founder Sam Walton)—own over 50%of outstanding Walmart shares. This fiscal year, Rob, Jim, and Alice (and the various entities that they control) will receive an estimated $3.16 billion in Walmart dividends on those shares.
If Sam Walton’s dependents actually worked for their Walmart dividend checks this year, they would be handed $1.5 million every hour. Meanwhile, Walmart workers get an average of $8.81 per hour and are routinely denied full-time work.
Amid concerns about the fiscal cliff in December 2012, Walmart moved up the final dividend payout of its fiscal year from January 2013 to December 2012 to avoid a possible increase in the tax rate on dividends. As the company’s largest and wealthiest shareholders, the Waltons were the biggest beneficiaries of the move.
Most Walmart workers can only dream of making $25,000 in a year. Meanwhile, the Waltons get $25,000 per minute from their Walmart dividends alone.