Walmart has started laying off corporate workers, the retail giant confirmed on Wednesday, about a week after it predicted slashed profit margins and warned that consumers had pulled back on discretionary expenses owing to inflation.
In a statement to CNBC, the company described the layoffs as a way to “better position the company for a strong future.” Anne Hatfield, a Walmart spokesperson, refused to comment on how many workers will be affected and what departments have experienced job cuts. She said Walmart is still hiring in key business areas that are growing, including supply chain, e-commerce, health and wellness, and advertising sales.
However, a different report revealed that the company is laying off about 200 corporate workers in light of the reduced profit warning amid high fuel and food prices. Walmart, the largest US retailer, also warned that it expects a slowdown in customer spending for general merchandise for the second half of the year. Walmart is the largest employer in the country, with nearly 1.6 million workers in the U.S.
The retail giant added it would have to cut prices to sell more of those items, especially as a glut of inventory piled up in its stores and at those of competitors such as Target and Bed Bath & Beyond.