Personal Finance

Costco members buy over $100 million in gold bars, stock rises after earnings call

Fort Knox may have a competitor.

Retail giant Costco announced Thursday that it had sold over $100 million in gold bars in the first fiscal quarter of 2024, according to CNBC.

The announcement came in the company’s earnings call where the company said that they had a 6.1% increase in sales compared to the first quarter of 2023 and declared a $15 per share special dividend.

The wholesaler has the one ounce bars listed for sale online but they are available only to members with a limit of two bars per person. The one-ounce PAMP Suisse Lady Fortuna Veriscan and Rand Refinery bars are made of 24-karat gold and sell on Costco’s website for $2,069.99, according to CNBC.

The product is non-refundable and is shipped to customers via UPS. According to the product descriptions, the bars are brand new and come registered with certificates of authenticity and proof of lab analysis.

Gold and Costco stock prices

Costco’s stock (COST) hit record high Friday topping out at $661.88 and closing at $658.82, a 4.45% gain on the day.

The wholesale monolith has seen an impressive climb in the market over the course of the past year, climbing over 47% from its January 3 low of $447.90 per share.

Gold prices have been on a roller coaster in 2023, with the prices falling below $1900 in both February and September but also breaking the $2,000 threshold six times.

The price currently stands at $2,018.19 as of Friday afternoon.

The precious metal has seen a rise in value over the past five years as it has climbed from a spot price of roughly $1,200 an ounce in 2019.

According to investing website Investopedia, the price of gold is influenced by a number of market factors including supply and demand, interest rates, market volatility and potential risk to investors.

While research has found that gold doesn’t directly seem to correlate with inflation in any meaningful way, Jonathan Rose, co-founder of Genesis Gold Group, told CNBC that people are likely buying more gold in an attempt to own some sense of stability in an economy that is rife with inflation, a tough real-estate market and a growing distrust for banks and other financial institutions.

Rose also told the outlet, “The outlook for stability in the market isn’t good and people want a [tangible] asset that’s going to be a safe haven. That’s what gold and silver provide.”

Owning a piece of the real stuff is appealing to people looking to build a sense of self-sufficiency that they believe will withstand a turbulent cash market.

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Costco gold bar sales top $100 million in quarter leading to dividend

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