Issaquah, Wash. — Costco Wholesale Corp. here said better operating procedures helped boost gross margins on fresh foods by approximately 0.5% during the fourth quarter ended Sept. 2, reversing a slight negative trend from earlier in the year. Net income for the 16-week quarter rose 4.7% to $372.4 million, compared with the 17-week fourth quarter a year ago, while sales jumped 3% to $20.1 billion and comparable-warehouse sales increased 5%. For the 52-week year (compared with the prior ...

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