The stock of Costco Wholesale (COST) has lost 13% just since its August high of nearly $170 a share, and now trading at $147 is down 8% since the start of the year. There's one big bugaboo that's been stalking the stock: that business model disruptor known as Amazon (AMZN) .
In April 2014, Amazon introduced Amazon Prime Pantry. The service will deliver everyday essentials via a familiar e-commerce model. Amazon always made sure to point out that the contents of the grocery box you just received came in "everyday sizes" - a clear jab at the warehouse-sized packages that the Costcos of the world made you buy.
It threatened to be a problem and not just competitively. Amazon's entry into the grocery space also created significant reputational damage. Costco was supposed to be Amazon proof. It had long had one retail model that Amazon couldn't match, let alone blow up.
Now they were going to go head to head.
Walmart (WMT) -- the original grocery store disruptor -- got so scared about Amazon's straying into its lane that it went out and agreed to spend $3.3 billion on e-commerce grocery purveyor Jet.com, just to build a moat between its e-commerce opportunities and Amazon's scorched earth business model.
But the reality for Costco is that there's no monster that looks like Jeff Bezos hiding under the bed.