The pay hike, which will cost $1 billion, comes as the world’s largest retailer reports a strong holiday quarter.

Wal-Mart is celebrating a surprisingly strong U.S. holiday season by spreading the wealth a bit.

The world’s largest retailer and the nation’s largest private employer is spending $1 billion to increase hourly wages for its current U.S. store associates to more than $9 per hour, or higher, beginning in April. That increase is at least $1.75 above the federally mandated minimum wage. The decision will impact thousands of full and part-time U.S. employees.

Here are some other key points from Wal-Mart’s latest earnings report.

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