Costco kicks the Coke habit

Costco stops restocking Coke products during price negotiations

By Jim Van Meerten Nov 17, 2009 2:37PM
Credit: (©Jeff Chiu/AP)Costco (COST) has stopped carrying Coca-Cola (KO) products as the two companies bicker over pricing.

The companies won't say much about the squabble, other than that they are in price negotiations. 

This dispute will play out behind closed doors, but will affect many of us. My bet is that Coke won't budge. 

I think Costco needs Coke more than Coke needs Costco. But either way I doubt if we will ever know if Costco got as good a deal as, say, Wal-Mart (WMT). What do you think?

For years, Coke has been rumored to pressure stores and restaurants to carry only their products. Even today it's hard, almost impossible, to find a restaurant where you can get both Coke and Pepsi (PEP) products.

I'm amazed at the price difference for Coke products at volume retailers. There seems to be no rhyme nor reason for this. You would think that Wal-Mart, BJ's and Costco would all pay the same price. That doesn't seem to be the case.

At the time of this writing, Jim Van Meerten did not hold positions in any company mentioned.

Jim Van Meerten is a investor who writes on financial matters here and on Financial Tides. Please comment below or email FinancialTides@gmail.com
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