Jul 21, 2018

The big picture: Inconsistent wages are top concern for workers

Walmart employee pushes grocery carts at a Walmart store. Photo: Joe Raedle/Getty Images

Amid a stagnating wages crisis, income volatility continues to be a top concern for workers.

Why it matters: This concern is spreading so rapidly that large employers like Walmart are looking for ways to help their employees better manage inconsistent income and personal finances. Walmart revealed on Thursday that more than 200,000 of its employees are now using Even, a system to help workers access their earned wages in between paychecks if they're short on cash for bills.

"What we quickly learned… is that [getting consistent income is] part of the problem and it’s not all of the problem... Income is part of it, but also what you do with that income."
— Even co-founder and CEO Jon Schlossberg tells Axios

This conclusion is why Even's app also includes features for budgeting, managing expenses, and saving money — all to make early withdrawal of earned wages a last-resort option for users.

  • Companies like Even also say they aim to be an alternative to payday loans, which come with exorbitantly high interest rates and can cause bigger financial problems.

The bottom line: Most American workers care more about having consistent pay than earning more, Tony Xu, CEO of food delivery startup DoorDash, said a year ago. DoorDash's delivery workers are independent contractors and part of the so-called "gig economy."

Go deeper: A look at Even, and similar services

Go deeper

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 3 a.m. ET: 5,410,228 — Total deaths: 345,105 — Total recoveries — 2,169,005Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 3 a.m. ET: 1,643,499 — Total deaths: 97,722 — Total recoveries: 366,736 — Total tested: 14,163,915Map.
  3. World: White House announces travel restrictions on Brazil, coronavirus hotspot in Southern Hemisphere Over 100 coronavirus cases in Germany tied to single day of church services — Boris Johnson backs top aide amid reports that he broke U.K. lockdown while exhibiting symptoms.
  4. Public health: Officials are urging Americans to wear masks headed into Memorial Day weekend Report finds "little evidence" coronavirus under control in most statesHurricanes, wildfires, the flu could strain COVID-19 response
  5. Economy: White House economic adviser Kevin Hassett says it's possible the unemployment rate could still be in double digits by November's election — Public employees brace for layoffs.
  6. Federal government: Trump attacks a Columbia University study that suggests earlier lockdown could have saved 36,000 American lives.
  7. What should I do? Hydroxychloroquine questions answeredTraveling, asthma, dishes, disinfectants and being contagiousMasks, lending books and self-isolatingExercise, laundry, what counts as soap — Pets, moving and personal healthAnswers about the virus from Axios expertsWhat to know about social distancingHow to minimize your risk.
  8. Other resources: CDC on how to avoid the virus, what to do if you get it, the right mask to wear.

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Updated 2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

U.S. coronavirus updates

Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins; Map: Andrew Witherspoon/Axios. This graphic includes "probable deaths" that New York City began reporting on April 14.

The CDC is warning of potentially "aggressive rodent behavior" amid a rise in reports of rat activity in several areas, as the animals search further for food while Americans stay home more during the coronavirus pandemic.

By the numbers: More than 97,700 people have died from COVID-19 and over 1.6 million have tested positive in the U.S. Over 366,700 Americans have recovered and more than 14.1 million tests have been conducted.

World coronavirus updates

Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins; Map: Axios Visuals

Japan's economy minister outlined plans on Monday to end the nationwide state of emergency as the number of new novel coronavirus cases continues to decline to fewer than 50 a day, per Bloomberg. Japan has reported 16,550 cases and 820 deaths.

By the numbers: Over 5.4 million people have tested positive for the virus as of Monday, and more than 2.1 million have recovered. The U.S. has reported the most cases in the world (over 1.6 million from 13.7 million tests). The U.K. is reporting over 36,800 deaths from the coronavirus — the most fatalities outside the U.S.