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Stock in Focus: Costco Wholesale Corporation (NASDAQ:COST)

Stock in Focus: Costco Wholesale Corporation (NASDAQ:COST)
November 11
08:15 2014

[Bloomberg] Costco Wholesale Corporation (NASDAQ:COST) (Trend Analysis) the retailer that replaced American Express Co. as its credit-card issuer in Canada, is considering a similar move with its larger U.S. portfolio, according to two people familiar with the matter.

Costco is seeking bids for both an issuer and a payments network for its U.S. cards, the people said, requesting anonymity because the matter hasn’t been made public. New York-based AmEx could be among firms bidding for the contract, the people said.

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Taking a look at the company’s recent performance, Costco Wholesale Corporation (COST) reported fourth quarter earnings for fiscal 2014 on October 08th. The company reported actual earnings per share of $1.58 against the consensus Street estimate of $1.52 this represents year over year growth of 18.37%. Costco Wholesale Corporation (COST) posted revenue of $34.75 billion against estimates of $35.42 billion.

Costco Wholesale Corporation (COST) is currently valued at $60.09 billion and closed the last trading session at $137.71. The stock has a 50-day moving average of $128.90 and a 200-day moving average of $120.73.

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There are currently sixteen analysts that we track that cover the stock. Of those sixteen, eleven have a Buy rating, one has strong Buy rating and four have a Hold rating. On a consensus basis this yields a score of 2.81 and a Buy. The combined price objective of these covering analysts is $156.07, which represents a 25.21% upside difference to the last closing price.

The most recent analyst activity consisted of Williams’s capitaldowngrading their Hold stance on the company. Williams’s capital has a price target from $127.00 to $131.00 which represents an downside of 4.44% from the last closing price. On the date of the report, the stock closed at $126.25.

Another research firm weighing in recently was Zacks who reiterated their rating on the stock. On October 13th Zacks upgraded their price target on the stock to $135.00, or a 1.52% downside to the current price. On the day of the report, Costco Wholesale Corporation (NASDAQ:COST) shares closed at $126.97.

Company Profile

Costco Wholesale Corporation (NASDAQ:COST), together with its subsidiaries, operates membership warehouses. The company offers branded and private-label products in a range of merchandise categories. It provides dry and institutionally packaged foods; snack foods, candy, tobacco, alcoholic and nonalcoholic beverages, and cleaning and institutional supplies; appliances, electronics, health and beauty aids, hardware, garden and patio, and office supplies; meat, bakery, deli, and produce; and apparel, small appliances, and home furnishings. The company also operates gas stations, pharmacies, food courts, optical dispensing centers, photo processing centers, and hearing-aid centers; and engages in the travel business. In addition, it provides gold star (individual) and business membership services. As of October 8, 2014, it operated 664 warehouses, including 469 warehouses in the United States and Puerto Rico, 88 in Canada, 33 in Mexico, 26 in the United Kingdom, 20 in Japan, 11 in Korea, 10 in Taiwan, 6 in Australia, and 1 in Spain. Costco Wholesale Corporation also sells its products through online. The company, formerly known as Costco Companies, Inc., was founded in 1976 and is based in Issaquah, Washington.

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Paul Cole

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