Best Buy raises wages as coronavirus increases sales

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Best Buy shares jumped more than 4% in after-hours trading on Tuesday, learning that the retailer’s online sales rose 255% quarter-over-quarter through July 18 by compared to the same time last year due to increased demand during the coronavirus pandemic.

“Strong consumer demand, combined with shopping experiences that emphasize safety and convenience, have helped drive our sales results to date,” said Corie Barry, CEO of Best Buy, in a statement. “None of this would be possible without the efforts and energy of our frontline employees working in stores, supply chain facilities and customer homes.”

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According to the company, the main areas of sales growth were in the categories of computing, devices and tablets.

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Since Best Buy began allowing customers to shop without an appointment at more than 800 stores in the United States from June 15, the company’s retail sales have increased by about 15% from the previous year, while online sales growth was around 185% over the previous year. year.

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The retailer noted that second-quarter sales were up about 2.5% through July 18, compared to the same period a year ago, including sales growth of 2% in the United States. United and 8% internationally.

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In addition, the company said it will begin increasing its starting hourly wage for all U.S. employees to $ 15 and giving employees a 4% raise from August 2.

A Best Buy employee attends to a customer outside a store in Montebello, Calif., April 15, 2020, as the electronics store chain remains closed to customers but open for pickups. (FREDERIC J. BROWN / AFP via Getty Images)

The move follows temporary leaves of approximately 51,000 hourly employees at Best Buy stores in the United States that began April 19. The company noted that it had kept around 82% of its full-time employees in its store and in the field during that time, including the majority of In-Home Consultants and Geek Squad agents.

About half of the 51,000 hourly domestic workers returned from leave on June 15. Meanwhile, the company has extended free health benefits until Sept. 5 to other leave employees currently enrolled in a company health plan.

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The company withdrew its guidance for fiscal 2021 in March and said it would provide additional business updates when releasing its second quarter results on August 25.

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