The company attributed the decision to the need to better fulfill online orders, less population growth than expected in some markets and too many competing locations.
The Sam's Club closures were confirmed the same day Walmart said it would lift the hourly minimum wage in the U.S. to $11 and give out bonuses of up to $1,000. USA Today
Sixteen of those Sam's Clubs are in cities or areas where there is a Costco Business Center - a separate business division from Costco Wholesale. Costco only has 16 Business Centers and 518 warehouses in the United States.
Costco does weekly comparison shopping of Sam's, Target, and Walmart and adjust prices in those areas of like or similar products to remain competitive. it's always a penny less than the competitor. Only prices at these warehouses or business centers are adjusted where the local Sam's, Target, or Walmart is lower. Else, the rest of the warehouses or business centers in the region remain at the Costco price whose margin is always no more that 13.9% of what Costco paid for the goods.
Costco's starting pay is $13/hr and their bonuses are $2,500 every six months.