Chairman and CEO of Bank of America Brian Moynihan will testify during a House hearing Wednesday. His bank announced Tuesday that it will boost its minimum wage for employees to $20 per hour by 2021. Photo by Terry Schmitt/UPI | License Photo
April 9 (UPI) — Bank of America announced Tuesday that it will raise the hourly minimum wage of its employees to $20 over the next two years.

The bank said it will boost its minimum wage to $17 on May 1. The second step of the increase to $20 will take place in 2021, the bank said. Bank of America said it hopes the raises will “support the diverse needs of its 205,000-plus employees.”

The institution said it had increased its minimum wage by $4 two years ago to $15. The federal minimum wage has been $7.25 since 2009. Some cities, such as San Francisco and Seattle, have raised their minimum wages to at least $15 per hour.

“We are raising our minimum wage because we believe that to best serve our customers and clients, we need the best teams,” Sheri Bronstein, chief human resources officer at Bank of America, said in a statement.

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“Saying thank you, celebrating great work, and sharing our success further demonstrates our commitment to being a great place to work,” she continued.

Last year, J.P. Morgan Chase boosted its hourly minimum wage for its branch employees to $18 and customer service center workers to $16.50, based on location.

Bank of America is one of the world’s largest banks with some 66 million customers and small business clients with more than 4,300 retail financial centers and 1,800 lending centers.

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The Bank of America announcement comes the day before its chief executive, Brian Moynihan, and other top banking officials will testify before the U.S. House Committee on Financial Services.

Moynihan will be joined by Michael Corbat, of Citigroup; James Dimon, of J.P. Morgan Chase; James Gorman, Morgan Stanley; Ronald O’Hanley, of State Street Corp.; Charles Scharf, of Bank of New York Mellon; and David Solomon, Goldman Sachs.

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