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Costco Sales Warm Up January

For the four weeks ended February 2, Costco Wholesale Corp. posted net sales of $7.99 billion, an increase of 6% from the four-week fiscal January period last year. Comparable store sales for month, excluding the effect from gasoline price deflation and foreign exchange, gained 5% in the United States, 8% internationally and, 6% for the company in total, Costco stated.

By region, the company reported in a conference call, San Diego, the Southeast and Midwest had the strongest comp results in the month. Detailed by product category, Softlines comps advanced in the mid to high single digits, with small appliances, housewares, domestics and women’s apparel coming in as the strongest selling segments. Hardlines gained in the low single digits with home office, automotive and hardware performing best, and consumer electronics negative in the mid to high single digit range. Food and Sundry comps were up in the mid single digit range, and Fresh Food comps increased in the low double digit range.

Average transaction was down 0.5%, which includes a negative 2.25% impact from foreign exchange and gas deflation. Comparable traffic frequency was up a little over 4.5%, the company noted in the conference call.

Costco comps narrowly beat a Thomson Reuter’s average analyst estimate of financial analysts.