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Fortune, noting that Costco Wholesale on Wednesday reported no growth in quarterly comparable sales at U.S. stores for the first time in more than six years, said that the company's relatively poor performance could be attributed both to "a pullback in spending by high-income consumers, who make up Costco’s core customer base" and "unseasonably cold weather in April."

• The New York Times reports that e-commerce giant Alibaba said that it is "under investigation by United States securities regulators over its accounting practices, a potential setback for a company long seen as a symbol of China’s growing technological might ... It also puts under scrutiny Alibaba’s handling of Singles Day, a one-day shopping event in China that the company says gave it the world record for most online sales volume in a day. Alibaba said it had provided the commission with information about how it reported data from that event.

"Alibaba said that it was voluntarily cooperating with the commission, and that the investigation was not an indication it had violated any law."

• In a letter to customers yesterday, Sports Authority CEO Michael Foss wrote that the company, which has been in business since 1919, will "close all of our stores by the end of August. We will be holding store closing sales at all of our locations that will allow you to take advantage of big discounts on great brands," and that gift cards will only be accepted through June 28.
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