Wal-Mart CEO David Glass is cashing in. At least, he’s selling off 200,000 shares of Wal-Mart common stock, worth roughly $9.4 million. That represents about 4% of the shares Glass holds. One analyst said “insider selling” is not generally a good sign of things to come, but since Glass is 63, and “is expected to retire soon”, it’s to be expected that “liquidating that position at some point is going to occur”. Glass earned $1.13 million last year as Wal-Mart CEO, but his total cash compensation, including stock awards, came to about $7.1 million. A bagger at Wal-Mart working for, say, $6.50 an hour, if she could get 40 hours per week, would have to work 523 years to match 1 year of Glass’s salary. But by the year 2522, there is not likely to be a Wal-Mart chain anywhere. So Wal-Mart workers today will never be able to earn as much as David Glass took home this past year. It would take 7 Wal-Mart workers, working full-time for their entire lifetime, from moment of birth to death (ave. lifespan of 76 years) to earn as much as Mr. Glass earned in one year. But even Glass has some place to look up. According to Forbes magazine, the four surviving members of the Walton family have a fortune estimated at $64 billion, which places them collectively as the second richest of the world’s billionaires, behind only Bill Gates — and twice as rich as the next guy down, Warren Buffet.
If David Glass is starting to liquidate his shares of Wal-Mart, perhaps it’s now time for me to liquidate my one share in the company. My share in the company certainly has failed to put me on the Forbes list, and I don’t even have to notify the SEC if I decide to sell. The bumper-sticker that reads “eat the rich” actually left off the second part, which is “…before they eat you.” Consumers of the world unite, you have nothing to lose but your chain stores. The Walton’s have amassed a remarkable share of the world’s fortune. Shoppers: spread the wealth. Find somewhere besides Wal-Mart to purchase cheap underwear. Act quickly, before Mr. Glass liquidates everything.