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Costco’s May Turned Out Sunny

For the month of May, Costco Wholesale Corp. has reported that, excluding the effect of gasoline price volatility, foreign exchange rate movement and one-time charges, comparable store sales gained 5% in the United States, 7% internationally and 6% for the total company. With the gas, exchange and one-time charges included, May comps increased 5% in the U.S., 6% internationally and 5% in total for the company.

Net sales in May reached $8.13 billion, an increase of 7%, the company stated.

In reviewing sales by category, Costco noted in a conference call, that Softlines, including home segments, enjoyed low double digit comp gains. Better performing segments included small appliances, housewares, jewelry and apparel. Hardlines comps advanced in the mid to high single digit range with better performing segments including garden, office, hardware, tires and consumer electronics. Food and Sundries and Fresh Foods comps rose in the mid single digit range.

Texas, the Southeast and the Midwest were the strongest geographic regions in terms of sales.

Costco operates 627 warehouses, including 449 in the United States and Puerto Rico, 85 in Canada, 33 in Mexico, 24 in the United Kingdom, 15 in Japan, nine in Taiwan, nine in Korea and three in Australia. The company related that it plans to open nine new warehouse clubs prior to the end of its fiscal year on September 1.