The New York Times on Tuesday ran a story highlighting a new trend that’s emerged over the past year that’s causing many retailers to rethink their stock options and stock-buying strategies.
In a statement to the NYT, Amazon said, “The company has been very careful to ensure that our stock options are not overly generous to our retail employees, and we have increased our protections for workers under the Fair Labor Standards Act, including increased training, compensatory time, and paid time off.”
Amazon also said it has hired thousands of new workers in the last two years and is committed to hiring a million new people over the next five years, adding that “We’re confident that Amazon is one of the best places to work for a lot of people in America.”
Amazon’s stock has increased more than 7 percent over the last year, with the stock now trading around $125 per share, well above the S&P 500 average of $81.90.
That compares to an average annual return of 2.2 percent.
Amazon’s new stock buyback programs are designed to help employees save for retirement.
It’s not uncommon for companies to make large stock buybacks, which are intended to encourage stock buy-backs among employees.
In fact, a report from Bloomberg New Energy Finance found that the largest share of buybacks were in 2016 and 2017, when the stock price was near its all-time high.
Amazon stock is also up in recent months due to its acquisition of Whole Foods.
The deal will give Amazon more than 500,000 full-time jobs in the US and will create more than 4 million direct and indirect jobs.