Costco said January net sales rose 9% to $9.08 billion from last year. For the 22 weeks ended Jan. 29, the retailer reported that net sales increased 5% to $52.26 billion year-over-year.
U.S. comparable store sales increased 6% in January, while Canada comparable sales jumped 11% and other international rose 4%.
Costco also reported total company comparable sales growth of 7%, beating Wall Street estimates for an increase of 3% to 4%, TheStreet's Jim Cramer, Portfolio Manager of the Action Alerts PLUS charitable trust, which owns Costco, wrote in an article today.
"We are not surprised to see the strong results to kick off the year. As we noted in our earnings reaction last month, 'With deflationary pressures expected to abate as we move through 2017, the major headwind will be removed, allowing the business to benefit from the many underlying initiatives promising to boost traffic and sales,'" Cramer added.
But he noted that same-store sales in certain regions were positively impacted by the shift in the Chinese and Lunar New Year's into January as opposed to February. "As a result, February will see a slight impact to its numbers when reported next month," Cramer and the AAP team said.
Traffic was also up 4% in the month globally, led by a more than 5% jump in the U.S., which is a sign of the resiliency of the Costco business model, according to Cramer.
"That being said, we find it prudent to take some off of the table, with the stock trading more than 3% higher in the pre-market," he said, adding that AAP is selling 100 shares.
While he continues to believes in the Costco business model, he recognizes the troubled retail backdrop and wants to take advantage of the move higher and "and make more room to add back to the name should shares drop toward or below the $160 level."
Costco currently operates 725 warehouses, including 506 in the U.S. and Puerto Rico, 94 in Canada, 36 in Mexico, 28 in the U.K., 25 in Japan, 13 in Korea, 13 in Taiwan, eight in Australia and two in Spain.