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Calling Sen. Menendez: Costco selling gold bars for a cool $1949

By Jake Beardslee · September 28, 2023

In brief…

  • Costco customers are rushing to buy $1,950 gold bars offered on the store's website.
  • Customers have been frustrated by lack of availability, as the bars sell out quickly.
  • Costco's CFO says theft is not a significant issue for them as it has been for other big retailers.
Costco customers are buying up limited supplies of gold bars offered online and in some stores.  Jacob Blanck/Wikimedia

Costco customers have been rushing to purchase an unexpectedly hot item: Gold bars.

The wholesale giant is known for its wide range of bargain products, from huge tubs of Nutella to caviar and saunas. Yet gold bars — priced around $1,950 — have proven popular, sparking a “gold rush” among shoppers.

“I’ve gotten a couple of calls that people have seen online that we’ve been selling one-ounce gold bars.” Costco CFO Richard Galanti said on an earnings call this week. “Yes, but when we load them on the site, they’re typically gone within a few hours, and we limit two per member.”

While the bars seem to only be on Costco’s U.S. website, TikTok users have shown that locations in Korea have gold bars on store shelves, with some priced up to $79,000. Costco currently offers bars from PAMP Suisse for $1,979 and Rand Refinery for $1,949 online. Both are valued slightly above gold futures prices.

Demand for the limited gold bars has been high, frustrating some customers.

“[I] saw it for the first time last night while in bed and missed it by the time I woke up in the morning,” one Reddit user lamented.

Costco restocks the bars randomly every few months.

One TikTok user who scored two bars said they were “heavier than I thought.” She initially looked for new jewelry but was surprised to find gold bars for sale. She showed off her nearly $4,000 purchase, joking the 24-karat gold wasn’t her usual style, but she would “start rocking” it.

Costco’s gold offering comes as retail theft has surged nationwide. But Galanti said on the earnings call that shoplifting “is not a big issue for us.”