Costco Ramps Up Dividend By 8%

On April 15, its Board of Directors declared a quarterly cash dividend on Costco common stock and approved a quarterly increase from 65 to 70 cents per share, or $2.80 on an annualized basis. The latest hike marks COST’s 16th consecutive year of dividend growth.

The dividend is payable May 15, 2020, to shareholders of record at the close of business on May 1, 2020.

Costco stock has marginally increased on a year-to-date basis, and looking forward analysts are cautiously optimistic about the stock’s prospects.

According to TipRanks, COST shows a Moderate Buy analyst consensus with a $329 average analyst price target. In the last three months the company has received 13 buy ratings and 7 hold ratings. (See COST stock analysis on TipRanks).

“With what we view as a huge competitive advantage (buying better and working on a lower mark-up than almost any other company) and attractive defensive characteristics in a weakening economic environment, we remain buyers of COST shares” commented RBC Capital analyst Scot Ciccarelli on April 9.

He made the comments after Costco reported that US core same store sales (ex-fuel and FX) increased 12.1% in March vs the +24.1% consensus, due to social distancing guidelines.

Despite the miss, Ciccarelli continues to believe that Costco remains one of the best positioned stocks among his coverage to overcome the current crisis due to their heavy food/consumable offerings- especially as stores remain open for business.

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