Costco's 3Q net income rises, sales climb

May 24, 2012 

ISSAQUAH, Wash. (AP) - Costco's fiscal third-quarter net income climbed 19 percent on lower asset charges and the wholesale club pulled in more money from membership fees.

The company posted earnings of $386 million, or 88 cents per share, for the period ended May 6. That's up from $324 million, or 73 cents per share, a year ago.

The current quarter included a charge related to assets of 1 cent per share, compared with a 7-cent charge in the prior-year period.

Revenue rose 8 percent to $22.32 billion from $20.62 billion, topping Wall Street's $22.11 billion.

Revenue at stores open at least a year increased 5 percent, with the figure up by that same amount in both the U.S. and overseas.

This metric is a key gauge of a retailer's health because it excludes results from stores recently opened or closed.

Excluding higher gas prices and unfavorable foreign currency exchange rates, revenue at stores open at least a year still climbed 5 percent. That revenue rose 4 percent in the U.S. and 8 percent abroad.

For the year to date, revenue at stores open at least a year increased 8 percent. It was up by that same amount overseas and rose 7 percent in the U.S.

Removing higher gas prices and unfavorable foreign currency exchange rates, revenue at stores open at least a year rose 7 percent; 6 percent in the U.S. and 9 percent internationally.

The company plans to open up an additional six new warehouses before the end of fiscal 2012.

Costco Wholesale Corp., based in Issaquah, Wash., currently has 602 warehouses, including 435 in the U.S. and Puerto Rico, 82 in Canada, 32 in Mexico, 22 in the U.K., 13 in Japan, eight in Taiwan, seven in Korea and three in Australia

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