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Retail theft is not a “major issue” at Costco, the company said on Tuesday after it beat Wall Street’s expectations for earnings.

Richard Galanti, the company’s chief financial officer, told analysts that shrink — an industry term that covers shoplifting, employee theft, organised retail crime and process mistakes — has increased by a few percentage points year-over-year, likely owing to greater use of self-checkout technology. He said theft levels were already low.

The comments come as Target on Tuesday announced the closure of nine stores due to high levels of “theft and organised retail crime.”

Costco earned $4.86 a share in its fourth quarter and $78.9bn in revenue, an 8.6 per cent increase year-over-year.

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