NEW YORK — Costco Wholesale Corp. turned in a strong September performance, leading the category with a 12% rise in same-store sales for the month. Wall Street expected a 10.1% rise. However, the warehouse club operator cautioned that margins were negatively impacted during the period and that it would be raising its membership fees to compensate.
Target Corp., helped by strong sales of groceries, beauty products and clothing, saw September same-store sales rise 5.3%, beating the projected 3.9% increase. Sales for the period rose 6.5% to $5.9 billion.
“We’re very pleased with our September comparable-store sales, which were somewhat ahead of our expectations,” said Gregg Steinhafel, chairman, president and CEO, Target Corp. “We experienced strong sales results throughout the month and across a broad array of merchandise categories, demonstrating Target’s ability to … generate strong financial performance even in this soft economic environment.”
Target was likely helped by its limited-time Missoni line launch, which sold out almost immediately and temporarily crashed the retailer’s website.
Other discount and warehouse same-store sales results included:
TJX Cos. same-store sales in September rose 4%, beating the projected 3.2% increase;
Ross Dress for Less was up 5%;
SteinMart dipped 1.7%; and
Stage Stores edged down .7%.