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Response rates to direct mail credit card offers slipped to a new low last year as the volume of solicitations climbed to a new high. For 2005, Americans received more than six billion credit offers in the mail as the response rate hit 0.3%. However, the number of direct mail solicitations has dropped dramatically this year by 20% to 25% in the first quarter. According to Synovate’s “Mail Monitor,” household penetration peaked at 79% in 2001 when issuers extended their offerings to less credit-worthy or sub-prime households. The research firm says the high level of clutter has caused response rates to drop to the all-time low from 2.8% in 1992.

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|_4. CARD MAIL HISTORICAL |
|_. | YEAR | OFFERS | RESPONSE |
|_. | 1998: | 3.44b | 1.2% |
|_. | 1999: | 2.54b | 1.0% |
|_. | 2000: | 3.54b | 0.6% |
|_. | 2001: | 5.01b | 0.6% |
|_. | 2002: | 4.89b | 0.5% |
|_. | 2003: | 4.29b | 0.6% |
|_. | 2004: | 5.23b | 0.4% |
|_. | 2005: | 6.06b | 0.3% |
|_4. Source: Synovate’s Mail Monitor |

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