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Costco’s third quarter sales and earnings rise
May 29th, 2014
ISSAQUAH, Wash. – Costco Wholesale Corp. on Thursday said profits rose in its fiscal third quarter on higher sales and revenue from membership fees. Comparable-store sales in the United States climbed 6% in the three months ended May 11.
Costco’s earnings increased to $473 million, or $1.07 a share, from a year-earlier profit of $459 million, or $1.04 a share, missing Wall Street’s estimates. Revenue was up 7.1% to $25.8 billion, exceeding analysts’ forecasts.
The operator of the nation’s largest warehouse chain said its third quarter operating margin narrowed to 2.9% from 3% a year earlier.
Revenue from membership fees rose 5.6% to $561 million.
The company’s international stores outperformed its domestic outlets in terms of sales growth in the period. Comparable-store sales grew at an 8% pace internationally.
Costco operates stores in Canada, Mexico, the United Kingdom, Spain, Japan, Taiwan, South Korea and Australia. The company expects that 14 of the 30 warehouses to be opened in this fiscal year will be outside the United States, including its first stores in continental Europe. Over the next three or four years, officials have said, as many as 60% of new stores will be added outside the United States.