March 09, 2011 09:00 AM Eastern Daylight Time
Despite Increasing Gas Prices, Card Spending Growth Up in February
ATLANTA--(BUSINESS WIRE)--First Data Corporation, a global leader in electronic commerce and payment processing, today released its First Data SpendTrend™ analysis for the full month of February 2011 compared to February 2010. SpendTrend tracks same-store consumer spending by credit, signature debit, PIN debit, EBT cards and checks at U.S. merchant locations.
“February was another good month for overall card spending, despite significant increases in gas prices”
Overall dollar volume growth increased 8.5% in February, up from January’s 7.4% growth, as many retailers reported sales that beat expectations. Consumers demonstrated a renewed faith in the economic recovery and the unemployment rate dropped to 8.9% in February.
Average ticket growth increased 0.1% in February, the second year-over-year increase in the past nine months. This increase, however, is exclusively due to rising gasoline prices, which were up 28% from last year. Excluding gasoline stations, average ticket values declined -0.2%.
In the travel industry, dollar volume growth was up 13.6% in February, the highest since May 2010. Average tickets spiked 6.3% compared to a modest 1.9% in January. The increased growth in both dollar volume and average ticket growth is due in part to rising fuel costs. Transaction growth at travel merchants was 6.9%, only a slight increase over January.
For the first time in over two years, credit dollar volume growth was higher than signature or PIN debit. Credit dollar volume growth was 9.9% in February and credit transaction growth was 6.7%, both 24-month highs.
“February was another good month for overall card spending, despite significant increases in gas prices,” said Silvio Tavares, senior vice president and division manager of First Data Information and Analytics Solutions. “Credit card sales grew substantially as consumers increasingly used their credit cards to pay instead of debit cards and checks.”
Feb. Transaction Growth
Feb. Dollar Volume Growth
|Signature Debit||+10.4%||Signature Debit||+8.7%|
|PIN Debit||+6.7%||PIN Debit||+6.1%|
Note: All transactions are same-store growth.
For more information on First Data SpendTrend, visit www.firstdata.com/infoanalytics or call SpendTrend Customer Care at 800-430-0169. A supplementary podcast including further analysis of the SpendTrend February 2011 report is at http://www.firstdata.com/demos/spendtrend/SpendTrend_Feb2011.wmv.
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Around the world, every second of every day, First Data makes payment transactions secure, fast and easy for merchants, financial institutions and their customers. First Data leverages its vast product portfolio and expertise to drive customer revenue and profitability. Whether the choice of payment is by debit or credit card, gift card, check or mobile phone, online or at the checkout counter, First Data takes every opportunity to go beyond the transaction.
First Data SpendTrend, a macro-economic indicator, is based on aggregate same-store sales activity in the First Data Point of Sale Network. First Data SpendTrend does not represent First Data’s financial performance.
First Data Corporation
Elizabeth Grice, 303-967-8526
Elizabeth Grice, 303-967-8526