For Wal-Mart to generate sales growth this year, everything needs to go its way.
Yet as new qualification requirements roll into effect for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, as many as 1 million low-income shoppers are about become more tightfisted with their spending — something that is likely to take a nibble out of revenue at the world's largest retailer.
Starting in 2016, unemployed food stamp applicants between 18 and 49 years old, who are not disabled or raising minor children, will only qualify for the program for three months during a three-year period. That means in some states, those consumers who no longer qualify for SNAP lost their benefits April 1.
According to the nonpartisan Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, the time limit will be in effect in more than 40 states, including 22 of which have not had such a rule since before the recession. The center estimates the change will impact between 500,000 and 1 million people, as different states and counties roll out their take on the new requirements.