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Walmart wage increase benefits young workers the most

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Employees under 25, who are historically making less than previous generations, are most likely to benefit from the positive consequences of tax reform. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong, File)

Walmart, the largest retailer in the U.S., made a big announcement on Thursday: They're raising their starting wage to $11 an hour. And it's all thanks to President Trump's corporate tax cuts.

“Today, we are building on investments we’ve been making in associates, in their wages and skills development,” said Doug McMillon, president and CEO of Walmart.

On top of the bump in hourly pay, eligible employees will receive a cash bonus of up to $1,000, and the retail giant will revamp their system for maternal and paternity leave.

McMillon went on to hint that these changes are the first of many, saying, “We are early in the stages of assessing the opportunities tax reform creates for us to invest in our customers and associates and to further strengthen our business, all of which should benefit our shareholders."

This good news comes after last week's announcement that more than 1 million American workers with more than 100 companies already received pay hikes and bonuses following the passage of Republicans’ historic tax reform.

Employees under 25, who are historically making less than previous generations, are most likely to be positively impacted by these consequences of tax reform. Guess those millennials didn't need Bernie's Fight for 15 bill to see an increase in wages after all.

This boost is voluntary, and that makes it better.

While artificially setting a standard wage would have killed jobs and hurt low wage workers, these voluntary hikes in salary brought on by tax reform create healthy competition among all employers. Companies now maintain the freedom to choose how best to recruit new employees and invest in their team members, whether it be increased benefits packages, more vacation days, higher wages, or improved maternity leave. That means more options and flexibility for low-wage, young workers who need it the most.

As our economy continues to respond to the new tax code, it's certain this isn't the last good news from corporate America. For now, it's safe to say that if anyone had their doubts about the corporate cuts, they can rest easy. The benefits are trickling down just fine.

Corinne Clark (@corinnec) is a Republican communications strategist from Reno, Nevada who works with a number of congressional, senatorial, and gubernatorial races throughout the country.