Costco’s Sales Rise 15.5% in January

Costco Wholesale Corp.’s (NASDAQ: COST) net sales increased 15.5% year-over-year to $15.76 billion in January. Total comparable sales for the month jumped 14.2%.

Lunar New Year, which was 11 days earlier this year, on February 1, boosted the company’s total and other international sales by around 0.5% and 4%, respectively, in January.

Costco’s net sales rose 16.4% year-over-year to $92.1 billion for the 22 weeks ended January 30. Total comparable sales went up 14.8%.

Following the announcement, the company’s shares lost 0.8% in the extended trading session on Wednesday.

About Costco

Washington-based Costco operates a chain of membership-only big-box retail stores. It currently runs 828 warehouses, including 572 in the U.S. and Puerto Rico, 105 in Canada, 40 in Mexico, 30 in Japan, 29 in the U.K., 16 in South Korea, 14 in Taiwan, 13 in Australia, four in Spain, two each in France and China, and one in Iceland.

The company also operates E-commerce sites in the U.S., Canada, the U.K., Mexico, South Korea, Taiwan, Japan, and Australia.

Wall Street’s Take

After the sales figures were released, Robert W. Baird analyst Peter Benedict maintained a Buy rating on the stock with a $600 price target (15% upside potential).

In a research note to investors, the analyst said, “The company’s traffic gains remain impressive, its category strength was again broad-based, and its membership base has never been stronger, even though the stock still trades at an elevated valuation.”

Overall, the stock has a Strong Buy consensus rating based on 19 Buys and 4 Holds. The average COST price target of $577.41 implies 10.6% upside potential. Shares have gained 38.4% over the past year.

Website Traffic

TipRanks’ Website Traffic Tool, which uses data from SEMrush Holdings (NYSE: SEMR), the world’s biggest website usage monitoring service, offers insight into Costco’s performance.

According to the tool, compared to the previous year, Costco’s website traffic registered an 8.5% decline in global visits in December. However, the website traffic has increased nearly 13% year-to-date against the same period last year.

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