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Costco Beats on Both Top and Bottom Lines

Costco (Nasdaq: COST  ) reported earnings on Dec. 12. Here are the numbers you need to know.

The 10-second takeaway
For the quarter ended Nov. 25 (Q1), Costco beat slightly on revenues and beat slightly on earnings per share.

Compared to the prior-year quarter, revenue expanded and GAAP earnings per share grew significantly.

Margins increased across the board.

Revenue details
Costco notched revenue of $23.72 billion. The 15 analysts polled by S&P Capital IQ expected to see a top line of $23.44 billion on the same basis. GAAP reported sales were 9.6% higher than the prior-year quarter's $21.63 billion.

Source: S&P Capital IQ. Quarterly periods. Dollar amounts in millions. Non-GAAP figures may vary to maintain comparability with estimates.

EPS details
EPS came in at $0.95. The 21 earnings estimates compiled by S&P Capital IQ forecast $0.93 per share. GAAP EPS of $0.95 for Q1 were 30% higher than the prior-year quarter's $0.73 per share.

Source: S&P Capital IQ. Quarterly periods. Non-GAAP figures may vary to maintain comparability with estimates.

Margin details
For the quarter, gross margin was 12.6%, 10 basis points better than the prior-year quarter. Operating margin was 2.7%, 20 basis points better than the prior-year quarter. Net margin was 1.8%, 30 basis points better than the prior-year quarter.

Looking ahead
Next quarter's average estimate for revenue is $24.92 billion. On the bottom line, the average EPS estimate is $1.06.

Next year's average estimate for revenue is $106.08 billion. The average EPS estimate is $4.48.

Investor sentiment
The stock has a five-star rating (out of five) at Motley Fool CAPS, with 4,432 members out of 4,590 rating the stock outperform, and 158 members rating it underperform. Among 1,303 CAPS All-Star picks (recommendations by the highest-ranked CAPS members), 1,276 give Costco a green thumbs-up, and 27 give it a red thumbs-down.

Of Wall Street recommendations tracked by S&P Capital IQ, the average opinion on Costco is outperform, with an average price target of $103.41.

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Seth Jayson had no position in any company mentioned here at the time of publication. You can view his stock holdings here. He is co-advisor of Motley Fool Hidden Gems, which provides new small-cap ideas every month, backed by a real-money portfolio. The Motley Fool owns shares of Costco Wholesale. Motley Fool newsletter services recommend Costco Wholesale. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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