Costco Earnings: COST Stock Dips 2% Despite Beating Q4 Estimates

Costco (NASDAQ:COST) earnings for the retail company’s fiscal fourth quarter of 2020 have COST stock dipping lower after hours Thursday. This comes after reporting diluted earnings per share of $3.13 on revenue of $52.28 billion. Both of these are better than Wall Street’s estimates of $2.83 per share and revenue of $52.08 million.

A Costco Wholesale (COST) warehouse in Auburn Hills, Michigan.

Source: ilzesgimene /

Here’s what else is worth noting from the most recent Costco earnings report.

  • Diluted per-share earnings are up 26.7% from $2.47 during the same time last year.
  • Revenue for the quarter comes in 12.5% higher than the $46.45 billion reported in fiscal Q4 2019.
  • Operating income of $1.93 billion is a 32.2% increase year-over-year from $1.46 billion.
  • The Costco earnings report also has net income coming in at $1.39 billion.
  • That’s a 26.4% jump from the company’s net income of $1.1 billion in the same period of the year prior.

Costco includes the following statement in its fiscal Q4 earnings report.

“This year’s fourth quarter was negatively impacted by incremental expense related to COVID-19 premium wages and sanitation costs of $281 million pretax ($0.47 per diluted share) and a $36 million pretax charge ($0.06 per diluted share) related to the prepayment of $1.5 billion of debt. These items were partially offset by an $84 million pretax benefit ($0.15 per diluted share) for the partial reversal of a reserve of $123 million pretax ($0.22 cents per diluted share), related to a product tax assessment taken in the fourth quarter of last year.”

Costco doesn’t discuss guidance in its current earnings report. This likely has to do with the novel coronavirus making markets unpredictable.

COST stock was down 1.6% after-hours Thursday.

On the date of publication, William White did not have (either directly or indirectly) any positions in the securities mentioned in this article.

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