Consumer Payment Card News

Holiday Card Use

Americans will likely use general purpose credit/debit cards and store credit cards to charge more than $148 billion in retail sales this holiday season. While overall spending via all payment means is expected to rise between 4% and 5%, the figure for payments cards will increase about 10% above last year. This year there are 32 shopping days between the Thanksgiving and Christmas holiday period, compared to 31 days last year and 30 days in 2005. For the 2006 holiday shopping season, holiday purchases on general purpose credit/debit cards and store credit cards increased more than 12%. Signature debit card use is expected to increase by more than 16% while store credit cards will be up about 8.5%. Credit card volume is running about 8% above last year. Consumers will likely rack up more than $92 billion in holiday sales on VISA, MasterCard, American Express and Discover credit cards. The National Retail Federation says total holiday retail sales are expected to increase 4.0% this year to $474.5 billion.

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Holiday Card Volume
(five weeks ending 12/25)
2005 2006 2007 Y/Y Gain
Credit: $ 77.1 b $ 85.6 b $ 92.2 b + 7.7%
Debit: $ 28.2 b $ 35.3 b $ 41.0 b +16.2%
Store: $ 14.7 b $ 13.9 b $ 15.1 b + 8.5%
TOTAL $120.0 b $134.8 b $148.3 b +10.0%
Source: CardData (www.carddata.com)

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