Costco's August same-store sales beat estimates

Sept 5 Thu Sep 5, 2013 4:09am EDT

Sept 5 (Reuters) - Costco Wholesale Corp's August same-store sales pipped analyst estimates, even as lower fuel prices and weak foreign exchange rates weighed on the U.S. warehouse club retailer's comparable sales.

Sales at stores open at least a year rose 4 percent, including the impact of fuel and foreign exchange, in the four-week period ended Sept. 1.

On that basis, analysts had expected same-store sales to rise 3.8 percent for the month of August, according to Thomson Reuters data.

Net sales for the month of August rose 7 percent to $7.95 billion, while fourth quarter sales rose 1 percent to $31.8 billion, the company said.

Costco, which competes with BJ's Wholesale Club Inc and Wal-Mart Stores Inc's Sam's Club, offers everyday items like bananas below supermarket prices, hoping customers will buy other goods as well and usually prices gasoline lower than competing stations.

The company would open 15 new warehouses by the end of year, Jeff Elliot, assistant vice president of financial planning and investor relations, said in a pre-recorded conference call.

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