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January 7, 2010 at 3:04 AM EST

Costco Wholesale Corporation Reports December Sales Results

ISSAQUAH, WA, Jan 07, 2010 (MARKETWIRE via COMTEX) -- Costco Wholesale Corporation ("Costco") (NASDAQ: COST) today reported net sales of $8.26 billion for the month of December, the five weeks ended January 3, 2010, an increase of 11 percent from $7.41 billion in the same five-week period last year.

For the eighteen weeks ended January 3, 2010, the Company reported net sales of $26.83 billion, an increase of 8 percent from $24.93 billion during the similar period last year.

Comparable sales for the periods ended January 3, 2010, were as follows:

                           5 Weeks   18 Weeks
                           --------  --------
        U.S.                  5%        2%
        International        25%       17%
        Total Company         9%        5%
                           ========  ========

Inflation in gasoline prices and strengthening foreign currencies had a positive impact on December's comparable sales. Comparable sales excluding these effects were as follows:

                           5 Weeks   18 Weeks
                           --------  --------
        U.S.                  2%        2%
        International        10%        8%
        Total Company         4%        3%
                           ========  ========

Additional discussion of these sales results is available on a pre-recorded telephone message. You can access the recording by dialing 1-800-642-1687 (conference ID 44187102). This recorded message will be available today through 5:00 p.m. (PT) on Friday, January 8, 2010.

Costco currently operates 566 warehouses, including 413 in the United States and Puerto Rico, 77 in Canada, 21 in the United Kingdom, seven in Korea, six in Taiwan, nine in Japan, 32 in Mexico and one in Australia. The Company also operates Costco Online, an electronic commerce web site, at and at in Canada.

Certain statements contained in this document and the pre-recorded telephone message constitute forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. For these purposes, forward-looking statements are statements that address activities, events, conditions or developments that the Company expects or anticipates may occur in the future. Such forward-looking statements involve risks and uncertainties that may cause actual events, results or performance to differ materially from those indicated by such statements. These risks and uncertainties include, but are not limited to, domestic and international economic conditions, including exchange rates, the effects of competition and regulation, uncertainties in the financial markets, consumer and small business spending patterns and debt levels, conditions affecting the acquisition, development, ownership or use of real estate, actions of vendors, rising costs associated with employees (including health care costs), geopolitical conditions and other risks identified from time to time in the Company's public statements and reports filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Costco Wholesale Corporation
Richard Galanti

Bob Nelson

Jeff Elliott

SOURCE: Costco