Costco Earnings Up 5.9 Percent

Published by: Frank Galvano on 25th May 2011 | View all blogs by Frank Galvano
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Costco Earnings Up 5.9 Percent

Costco Wholesale Corp. released its fiscal third-quarter results Wednesday, posting a 5.9 percent rise in profits thanks to growing demand for warehouse club discounted merchandise.  For the three months ended May 8th, the company earned $324 million, or 73 cents a share, compared to earnings of $306 million, 68 cents a share, in the same period a year ago.  Revenue, meanwhile, jumped 16 percent to $20.62 billion, including membership fees.  Total sales at the chain's locations rose 16 percent, while its membership income rose 10 percent.

Analysts taking part in a recent Bloomberg survey projected Costco would report earnings of 77 cents a share  on revenue of $20.14 billion.  Costco, along with rivals Wal-Mart-owned Sam's Club and BJ's Wholesale, have benefited in recent months as rising food and fuel costs have driven shoppers to their stores for less expensive gas and groceries, though maintaining those lower prices has had a negative impact on profits.

Costco's sales at stores open a year or more climbed 12 percent in the quarter, including a 10 percent same-store sales increase in the U.S. and an 18 percent increase elsewhere.  Excluding the effects of gasoline sales and currency conversion rates, same-store sales were up 7 percent.

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