Costco May sales up 7%

Comps beat analyst estimate

ISSAQUAH, Wash. — Costco's reported May sales of $8.13 billion, a 7% increase over May 2012, the club retailer said Thursday.

Comps for the month increased by 5% in the chain's 449 U.S. stores during the period between May 6 and June 2. For the 39-week period that ended June 2, sales were $77.13 billion, an 8% increase over $71.28 billion during the same period last year, while comps increased by 6%. On a regional basis, the company's stores in Texas, the Southeast and the Midwest showed the strongest results.

Guggenheim Securities maintained a "Neutral" rating for Costco's stock — which was trading at $110.24 per share by midmorning Thursday, up 1% — though the 5% rise in comps was above Guggenheim's forecast of 3%. Meanwhile, New York-based investment firm Sterne Agee gave the stock a "Buy" rating.

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