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Costco customers splashed out for gold bars last quarter, CFO says

Costco apparently made quite a bit of coin from gold bars in the first quarter, with many online customers having opened their wallets to score ounces of the precious metal.

“You’ve probably read about the fact that we’re selling 1-ounce gold bars,” Richard Galanti, the chief financial officer of the wholesale retailer, said Thursday evening. “We sold over $100 million of gold during the quarter.”

His comment about the gold bar sales came as Galanti briefly touched on some of the “fun wow items” that Costco put up for sale on its website in the quarter and others that recently got listed. 

The company has sold non-refundable 1-ounce gold bars from Rand Refinery and PAMP Suisse through its website, according to October reports. It instituted a 2-bar limit for Costco members.

Costco Wholesale Corporation

 

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Costco saw quite a bit of demand for them, with Galanti reporting in late September that “when we load them on the site, they’re typically gone within a few hours.”

Costco sign

Costco members reportedly bought over 4 million pies in the three-day span ahead of Thanksgiving. (Kena Betancur/VIEWpress / Getty Images)

The price of gold — as measured by the front-month COMEX futures — hovered around $2,036 per troy ounce as of Friday afternoon. 

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Galanti also provided some interesting color on the number of pie sales that occurred around Thanksgiving. Costco members bought a total of over 4 million pies in the three-day span ahead of the holiday, including 2.9 million pumpkin pies and 1.3 million apple and pecan ones, he said.

Costco entrance

Longtime Costco CEO Craig Jelinek will step down at the end of the year and Ron Vachris, Costco’s current president and chief operating officer, will replace him. (REUTERS/Mohammad Khursheed / Reuters Photos)

In the first quarter, Costco said its total revenue saw an over 6% year-over-year increase, coming in at $57.8 billion. Its net income was $1.59 billion, according to the company.

Ticker Security Last Change Change % COST COSTCO WHOLESALE CORP. 671.60 +6.44 +0.97%

Costco is set to have a new CEO — Ron Vachris — take over in January as part of a “long-standing succession plan” that current CEO Craig Jelinek “has discussed with the board,” the company said in October. 

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