America’s Biggest Employers

Walmart is the largest private employer in 21 U.S. states

The federal and state government the top employers in almost every U.S. State. One unique exception is in the Big Apple where city’s massive municipal government is the largest employer in the entire state.

8 U.S. states have more active military personnel than any single private employer.

If exclude direct government and military employers and instead look at the private sector, health care and education are top employers in a number of cases. It’s worth noting that even in places where a university is at the top of the list a major component of the employee base often comes from affiliated health care facilities. A few U.S. states bucked this trend in a way that highlights regional industries for example General Motors is the top employer in Michigan. In Nevada, MGM Resorts employs over 55,000 people, but perhaps the most evident trend in this map is the dominance of a specific company Walmart.

Walmart is the largest private employer on the planet with over 1.5 million employees in the United States alone, that’s equivalent to 1% of America’s total private sector workforce. Today the company has over 5,300 stores across the country, and when you look at the expansion of Walmart location over the past 50 years, it’s easy to see how the company came to dominate employment in the southern states. Walmart’s growth went hand-in-hand with a population boom across the south, and by the 90s blue big-box stores were popping up across the nations. The company’s home state of Arkansas is still heavily influenced by the retail giant. The state has by far the most Walmart locations per capita and the company employs 4% of the State’s total workforce (1/3 of the state’s retail employees work for Walmart).

Even though the retail sector is undergoing big changes Walmart is still the biggiest company in the world by reveneue.

Amazon is now the nation’s second largest employer but unless there are more. While Amazon’s growth s astonishing reliance on contract workers and the continued automation of their supply chain will likely keep employee counts below Walmart in the near term.

Walmart’s employers by state
Texas – 168,403
Florida – 107,460
Georgia – 60,002
Illinois – 53,687
Arkansas – 52,367
Ohio – 50,186
Virginia – 43,623
Missouri – 42,029
Tennessee – 40,598
Indiana – 39,875
Alabama – 37,207
Louisiana – 36,309
Oklahoma – 32,713
South Carolina – 32,165
Kentucky – 29,554
Mississippi – 24,180
Kansas – 20,103
West Virginia – 11,864
New Hampshire – 7,593
Montana – 4,861
Wyoming – 4,648

Countries with a GDP higher than Walmart’s annual revenue ($482.13 billion)

Countries with a GDP higher than Walmart's annual revenue ($482.13 billion)
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