Costco CFO issues shopper price warning and hints trend similar to ‘lipstick effect’ is resurging across America

COSTCO executives are noticing changes in shoppers’ buying habits reminiscent of the “lipstick effect.”

The phenomenon is that shoppers continue to spend money on smaller luxury items like makeup and candles, but are holding back on larger luxury purchases.

Costco executives said they've noticed a shift in the way customers spend their money


Costco executives said they’ve noticed a shift in the way customers spend their moneyPhoto credit: Getty
CFO Richard Galanti, speaking to investors, said buyers are reluctant to make larger purchases for cheaper options


CFO Richard Galanti, speaking to investors, said buyers are reluctant to make larger purchases for cheaper optionsPhoto credit: Getty
This has been likened to the


This has been likened to the “lipstick effect” where shoppers continue to spend money on smaller luxury items rather than larger luxury purchasesPhoto credit: Getty

Speaking to investors, Costco CFO Richard Galanti said he’s seen customers switch from buying beef products to cheaper options like pork and chicken, reports GoBankingRates.

He said he’s seen this trend before when the US has been in recession in the past.

Galanti added that some customers choose to purchase canned meat and fish, which are cheaper and have a longer shelf life.

In times of hyperinflation, shoppers are stocking up on durable items that last longer on tighter budgets.

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A Federal Reserve report found that 64 percent of Americans have switched to cheaper versions of products to save money amid rising prices.

However, 66 percent of those surveyed indicated that they use a certain item less or remove it from their normal shopping trips.

This is consistent with data from Costco, which showed Americans prefer cheaper items across the board.

Galanti said sales of Kirkland Signature, the Costco brand that typically sells for less than mainstream brands, rose last quarter.

Costco Sales fell 4.2 percent globally and 3.5 percent in the US in the first quarter of 2023.

A large part of that decline is due to customers delaying big purchases like TVs and refrigerators, Galanti said.

Meanwhile, Costco’s customers were heartbroken after the retailer discontinued several popular baked goods.

Over the years, Costco has launched several items that have resonated with customers — only to mysteriously disappear soon after.

Products are typically discontinued due to low sales, but sometimes supply chain issues or customer complaints also result in a popular item being discontinued.

Whatever the reason, many shoppers are missing out on some of Costco’s most famous baked goods.

The US Sun has compiled a complete list of the most discontinued baked goods.

Costco fans, too, rush to their local store to purchase a two-foot-plus willow board.

TikTokerin @annekoii shared the product on her page and tagged it “#costcogem”.

Shoppers can pick up the acacia willow board for just $19.99, which Anne says is $40 cheaper than Amazon.

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Willow boards are becoming more and more popular because beautiful Instagram-worthy spreads are made for barbecues, parties and major events.

Those who have tried making their own platters using chopping boards will find that there is not enough space.

Aila Slisco

Aila Slisco is a Dailynationtoday U.S. News Reporter based in London. His focus is on U.S. politics and the environment. He has covered climate change extensively, as well as healthcare and crime. Aila Slisco joined Dailynationtoday in 2023 from the Daily Express and previously worked for Chemist and Druggist and the Jewish Chronicle. He is a graduate of Cambridge University. Languages: English. You can get in touch with me by emailing:

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