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Costco Sales Jump 14%, Net Soars 25%

3/03/2004 09:20:00 AM Eastern

Issaquah, Wash. — Costco Wholesale reported that it was positively impacted by stronger foreign currencies and a Southern California supermarket strike that began last October, enabling the chain to register a 14 percent sales increase during its fiscal second quarter, hitting $11.3 billion, up from $9.9 billion in the year-ago period.

Net income in the second three months, ended Feb. 15, soared 25 percent, with the wholesale club reporting $226.8 million in profit, compared with $182.1 million the previous year. Included in the second quarter’s operating results was a pre-tax charge of $26 million. Comp-store sale jumped 11 percent.

Costco net sales for the first half increased 14 percent to $21.6 billion, from $18.9 billion during the first six months of the previous year. Comp-store sales also rose 11 percent during this period.

Net income for the first six months climbed 18 percent, reaching $387 million, up from $327.8 million a year earlier.

Costco, which currently operates 318 warehouse clubs in the United States, plans to open seven to eight new warehouses, including the relocation of one warehouse to a larger and better-located facility, prior to the completion of its fiscal year at the end of August.