Walmart Shuttering 63 Sam's Club Stores

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Sam's Club, which has 100,000 associates, operates more than 650 membership warehouse clubs in the United States, according to its website.

The chain will close three stores in the Indianapolis, Indiana area on January 26, affecting a total of 419 workers, the Indianapolis Star reported. The company did not respond to CBS News' request for a comment, and did not elaborate on how many stores would be closed and when.

The Sam's Club closings came without an announcement.

"We know this is hard news for our associates and we are working to place as many of them as possible at nearby locations", John Furner, president and CEO of Sam's Club, said in the statement.

Reports surfaced Thursday morning that Sam's Club employees were not informed in advance and found the doors locked when they reported to work.

They also said they were given the option to stop working immediately or continue working for the next two weeks for double their normal pay.

Pharmacies at the affected Sam Club's are staying open for the next few weeks to allow customers to transition.

Walmart announced on Thursday it will soon be raising its workers' starting wage rate for hourly employees to $11 in the wake of the Republican-backed tax plan.

The closures came on the same day that Walmart announced it would boost its starting salary for USA workers to $11 an hour and hand out one-time cash bonuses. Meanwhile, the retail giant also announced some workers will get a raise, and others, a bonus of up to $1,000, citing tax reform.

"[We've] had numerous inquiries from Sam's Club employees", BJ's said in a statement. Employees are also getting a one-time bonus of up to $1,000.

The company said the wage increase - $11 per hour starting pay - benefits all hourly USA workers at its stores, including Sam's Club, as well as hourly employees at its websites, distribution centers - including the one in Rock Falls - and its Bentonville, Arkansas, headquarters.

"They raised minimum wage", White House press secretary Sarah Sanders told reporters at a press briefing.

"We've made a decision to right-size our fleet and better align our locations with our strategy, " Sam's Club president and CEO John Furner said.

With about 175 employees per location, that would translate into some 11,025 people affected by the move.

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