The unemployment rate continues to fall and wages continue to rise. That's good news for workers, but not for the companies that are most reliant on labor.
Retail companies like Wal-Mart, Staples or Gap are worth $50,000 to $100,000 in market capitalization for each person they employ. That's much lower than average, indicating that those companies would be hit harder by a dollar increase in wages. On the flip side, tech titans Netflix and Facebook are worth more than $10 million for each employee, a figure that suggests to analysts that wage increases will be less of a burden on the companies' bottom lines.
Hourly wages rose by 2.7 percent year over year in March, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics report released Friday. That's slightly less of a gain than last month, but continues the general upward climb over the last few years. Those additional costs have hit wage-sensitive stocks more than others, especially consumer discretionary companies.