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Costco Wholesale Corporation Reports Second Quarter and Year-to-Date Operating Results for Fiscal 2014 and February Sales Results


March 6, 2014 - Issaquah, WA

Costco Wholesale Corporation ("Costco" or the "Company") (NASDAQ: COST) announced today its operating results for the second quarter (twelve weeks) and first half (24 weeks) of fiscal 2014, ended February 16, 2014. Net sales for the quarter increased six percent, to $25.76 billion, from $24.34 billion last year. Net sales for the first half increased six percent, to $50.22 billion, from $47.55 billion last year.

Comparable sales for the twelve-week and twenty-four-week periods were as follows:



12 Weeks 24 Weeks
-------- --------
U.S. 4% 4%
International 0% 1%

Total 3% 3%
======== ========

Comparable sales for these periods, excluding negative impacts from gasoline price deflation and foreign exchange, were as follows:

 12 Weeks 24 Weeks -------- -------- U.S. 5% 5% International 7% 7% Total 5% 5% ======== ======== 

Net income for the quarter was $463 million, or $1.05 per diluted share, compared to $547 million, or $1.24 per diluted share, last year. Net income for the first half was $888 million, or $2.01 per diluted share, compared to $963 million, or $2.19 per diluted share, last year.

According to Richard Galanti, Chief Financial Officer of Costco, "Last year's net income was positively impacted by a $62 million ($0.14 per diluted share) tax benefit in connection with the portion of the special cash dividend paid by the Company in December 2012 to the Company 401(k) plan participants. Even with that distinction, however, the year-over-year comparison was unfavorable. Despite satisfactory sales results during the second fiscal quarter, several other factors led to lower earnings. These factors included: weaker sales and gross margin results in certain non-foods merchandise categories, particularly during the four-week holiday selling season; weaker gross margins in our fresh foods business; and lower reported international profits, resulting from the significant weakening of foreign exchange rates. The first four-week period of the quarter represented the majority of earnings underperformance in the quarter."

For the four-week reporting month of February ended March 2, 2014, the Company reported net sales of $7.90 billion, an increase of four percent from $7.58 billion during the similar four-week period last year. For the twenty-six week year-to-date period ended March 2, 2014, net sales were $54.22 billion, an increase of six percent from $51.35 billion during the similar twenty-six week period last year.

Comparable sales for the four-week and twenty-six-week periods ended March 2, 2014 were as follows:

 4 Weeks 26 Weeks -------- -------- U.S. 3% 4% International -1% 1% Total 2% 3% ======== ======== 

Comparable sales for these periods, excluding the negative impacts from gasoline price deflation and foreign exchange, were as follows:

 4 Weeks 26 Weeks -------- -------- U.S. 4% 5% International 5% 7% Total 4% 5% ======== ======== 

Costco currently operates 649 warehouses, including 462 in the United States and Puerto Rico, 87 in Canada, 33 in Mexico, 25 in the United Kingdom, 18 in Japan, 10 in Taiwan, nine in Korea and five in Australia. The Company plans to open up to an additional fourteen new warehouses prior to the end of its fiscal year on August 31, 2014. Costco also operates electronic commerce web sites in the U.S., Canada, the United Kingdom and Mexico.

A conference call to discuss these second quarter operating results and February sales results is scheduled for 8:00 a.m. (PT) today, March 6, 2014, and is available via a webcast on www.costco.com (click on Investor Relations and "Play Webcast").

Certain statements contained in this document constitute forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. For these purposes, forward-looking statements are statements that address activities, events, conditions or developments that the Company expects or anticipates may occur in the future. Such forward-looking statements involve risks and uncertainties that may cause actual events, results or performance to differ materially from those indicated by such statements. These risks and uncertainties include, but are not limited to, domestic and international economic conditions, including exchange rates, the effects of competition and regulation, uncertainties in the financial markets, consumer and small business spending patterns and debt levels, breaches of security or privacy of member or business information, conditions affecting the acquisition, development, ownership or use of real estate, amounts expected to be spent on expansion plans, actions of vendors, rising costs associated with employees (including health care costs), energy, and certain commodities, geopolitical conditions and other risks identified from time to time in the Company's public statements and reports filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

 COSTCO WHOLESALE CORPORATION CONDENSED CONSOLIDATED STATEMENTS OF INCOME (dollars in millions, except per share data) (unaudited) 12 Weeks Ended 24 Weeks Ended ------------------------- ------------------------- February 16, February 17, February 16, February 17, 2014 2013 2014 2013 ------------ ------------ ------------ ------------REVENUE Net sales $ 25,756 $ 24,343 $ 50,224 $ 47,547 Membership fees 550 528 1,099 1,039 ------------ ------------ ------------ ------------ Total revenue 26,306 24,871 51,323 48,586OPERATING EXPENSES Merchandise costs 23,043 21,766 44,867 42,492 Selling, general and administrative 2,531 2,361 5,032 4,693 Preopening expenses 8 6 32 24 ------------ ------------ ------------ ------------ Operating income 724 738 1,392 1,377OTHER INCOME (EXPENSE) Interest expense (26) (25) (53) (38) Interest income and other, net 30 26 48 46 ------------ ------------ ------------ ------------INCOME BEFORE INCOME TAXES 728 739 1,387 1,385 Provision for income taxes 255 185 483 410 ------------ ------------ ------------ ------------Net income including noncontrolling interests 473 554 904 975Net income attributable to noncontrolling interests (10) (7) (16) (12) ------------ ------------ ------------ ------------NET INCOME ATTRIBUTABLE TO COSTCO $ 463 $ 547 $ 888 $ 963 ============ ============ ============ ============ NET INCOME PER COMMON SHARE ATTRIBUTABLE TO COSTCO: Basic $ 1.05 $ 1.26 $ 2.02 $ 2.22 ============ ============ ============ ============ Diluted $ 1.05 $ 1.24 $ 2.01 $ 2.19 ============ ============ ============ ============ Shares used in calculation (000's) Basic 439,776 435,975 438,868 434,698 Diluted 442,829 439,812 442,627 439,222 Cash dividends declared per common share $ 0.31 $ 7.275 $ 0.62 $ 7.550 COSTCO WHOLESALE CORPORATION CONDENSED CONSOLIDATED BALANCE SHEETS (dollars in millions) (unaudited)Subject to Reclassifications February 16, September 1, 2014 2013 ------------- ------------- ASSETSCash and cash equivalents $ 5,130 $ 4,644Short-term investments 1,352 1,480Receivables, net 1,244 1,201Merchandise inventories 8,267 7,894Deferred income taxes and other current assets 641 621 ------------- ------------- Total current assets 16,634 15,840Property and equipment, net 14,348 13,881Other assets 584 562 ------------- -------------TOTAL ASSETS $ 31,566 $ 30,283 ============= ============= LIABILITIES AND EQUITY Accounts payable $ 7,707 $ 7,872Accrued salaries and benefits 2,260 2,037Other current liabilities 2,647 2,181Deferred membership fees 1,270 1,167 ------------- ------------- Total current liabilities 13,884 13,257Long-term debt, excluding current portion 4,985 4,998Deferred income taxes and other liabilities 988 1,016 ------------- ------------- Total liabilities 19,857 19,271 ------------- ------------- Total Costco stockholders' equity 11,515 10,833Noncontrolling interests 194 179 ------------- ------------- Total equity 11,709 11,012 ------------- -------------TOTAL LIABILITIES AND EQUITY $ 31,566 $ 30,283 ============= ============= 

CONTACTS:
Costco Wholesale Corporation
Richard Galanti
425/313-8203
Bob Nelson
425/313-8255
Jeff Elliott
425/313-8264

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