Amazon Upping its Hourly Wage to $15 per Hour

By: Marie Donlon

Facing economic and political pressure to better compensate its employees, online retail juggernaut Amazon announced that it will raise its internal minimum wage for all of its U.S. workers to $15 an hour.

"We listened to our critics, thought hard about what we wanted to do, and decided we want to lead," said Jeff Bezos, Amazon's founder and CEO.

The hike, which is in part dictated by a tightening labor market, will benefit the more than 350,000 Amazon employees in both full- and part-time positions as well as seasonal and temporary positions throughout the company.

Employees at Whole Foods, the grocery chain recently acquired by Amazon, can also expect to benefit from the hike.

Additionally, the company will campaign for an increase in the federal minimum wage rate, which is currently set a $7.25 an hour.